Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Our Trip to the North Pole

Merry Christmas! Hoping you are enjoying the last few days of the year. Yesterday, my parentals took us to a big lake ID for a little Christmas cheer and a cruise to the "North Pole" at the local country club. We shopped downtown at MaryJane's and the Irish store. We sipped Irish coffees on the boat. What could be so bad about that, eh?

And, lucky for Moose, i found my dream wool cloak almost like this one, just in time for our 10th wedding anniversary in 2011, which incidently will give us plenty of time to save up for it. ;O)

I'll have more pictures of this topic when we return home.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Yesterday we had a busy day--prep'ing and celebrating Christmas with my parents.

Moose and i had a "date" of sorts, to pick up gift certificates at a few of my parents favourite restaurants and go to daily Mass at our beloved church here. Fr. Dennis is a lovable, rascal of a priest. Yesterday, he greeted us all by stating that he firmly believed that yesterday's Feast Day of the Holy Innocents should actually be a holy day of obligation. We love that guy!

Hoping you all had a wonderful weekend!
Today, we're going on a Christmas boat ride to Santa's workshop and light display.
Aaah, Christmas boat rides. :O)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Just Poppin' In

To wish you a relaxing Sunday, and a Merry Christmas! We're hitting the road today--Idaho or Bust!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Who Says Christmas Is Over?

Isn't the day after Christmas depressing? Only if you have to leave the comfort of your home, i suppose. Unfortunately, today i did, and it made me realise...

  • the Christmas "stuff" in the store that had been out since August had mysteriously vanished.
  • the music in the store was back to the same ol' nonsence they played back at the beginning of November before they switched to Christmas music two weeks before Thanksgiving.
  • All the good Christmas movies (White Christmas, Holiday Inn, Miracle on 34th Street don't get any billing after Christmas day. Grr!
  • People are grumpy the day after Christmas. They should be thankful they aren't getting the same treatment St. Stephen received the day after Christmas!!
  • And when you wish them a "Merry Christmas" they look at you like your looney.

Made me wish i didn't need to go out for chicken treats or tp.

Granted, not everyone is Catholic, so they don't all hold the same traditions as we do--celebrating Christmas through Ephipany till the Baptism of the Lord. Even my parents, who aren't practicing a faith keep the tree, the Nativity, the lights, and the decorations up until January--always have. But it's so depressing to think about the people who just start packing away and moving on, not even 6 hours after midnight of Christmas day. So, after some thought, i decided that i will come back here each day of the Chirstmas season to wish you the warmest of Merry Christmases still for the next couple weeks.

Hoping you are able to enjoy today your new toys, your decorations, Jesus in the manger, your family, and all that the Christmas season brings! Fondly, Whit

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Excerpts From The Christmas Letter '09

What's the story out there? Do any of you despise the Christmas letter as much as we do? Sure, it's a time of taking stock of the year, putting a close on it, setting goals for the next year to follow, and catch up with family and friends far and wide. However....

We can't stand it! We're all so shy, a Christmas letter makes us feel all braggy and fake. And what's worse is when we hear from friends and family who say that they LOVED reading our our Christmas greetings over and over again because they were so funny. Oh, the horror! No shy person ever wants to be put on a radar, eh?

This year, we especially felt ridiculous spending so much money on cards, when they'll just be thrown out in a month. We've taken to printing our own and those costs can add up to something that could be a hefty donation to a food bank--more importantly, a week's worth of meals, with a holiday feast thrown in, for a few families that may need a little assistance.

But in the end, usually after a good heated discussion about whether to do it at all or not, Moose and i give in to the fact that we can really pull out a good Christmas letter when we sit down to it. It helps when you're ever so slightly exhausted, fresh from a dreadful night's sleep. That's when we pull off our best Christmas letters--cause they're extremely silly! The last couple years, our cards have included Christmas poems, or limericks, describing the photo adorning the front of the card such as this beauty from 2007:
We hope you Christmas is blessed
And your New Year is bright,
As we look like three deer
Caught in Santa’s headlights!
This year, in leiu of cards, we are just sending letters. I had the idea to make the letter sound like it was being told by the narrator of a superhero radio show--you know, Superman, the Green Hornet, and all that jazz.

And with that, i took some paper and pens, headed out the front door, let the girls out for Chicken recess, and sat out in the front yard to write this year's installment of our Christmas letter.

Here are some excerpts that i hope bring a smile to your face as you ready your nest for your celebrations.

"...thankfully, not only has Moose had cycling and baseball to distract him, he also has his kind wife and fiendishly clever child to keep his spirits up. For instance, on that cool, Spring day in April when family & friends came together to celebrate his 40th birthday with a “baby shower”, as all gifts benefited the nearby pregnancy aid. Why, even his loving wife learned to make fondant to build him his dream birthday cake--that looked like a dirty baseball. Thank goodness, with it’s raspberry crème filling & chocolate frosting, family members reported that at least it tasted better than one!"

"Meanwhile, at the desk in the family’s den, his humble wife, Whit, started another blog this year in an attempt to document why women like her should never be allowed near needles: sewing, knitting, or otherwise, nor should they be left unattended in craft or thrift stores for any amount of time. Alone. With a credit card."

"Now, folks, its time for a little photographic evidence, er…, intermission, brought to you by family vacations at Pacific Beach & by a clever little game known as “Are You Smarter Than A Broody Hen?” Which incidentally for our feeble-minded family resulted in them trying to fool a cranky ol’ hen into thinking she actually hatched the 6 chicks they adopted this year. In this unfortunate case, the answer to the question was 'no.'"

" Now, on to our final update of the season…Precocious Professor Gigglepuss, er, ahem, I mean Cookie Monster. What a busy girl she has been. Of course, there is the growing like a weed, the turning into a charming young lass, and all that; but let’s just say she’s grown more teeth than she’s lost this year."

"......proving herself even more precocious this year than last, was her declaration to her dear Mum just two weeks after Kindergarten graduation in June: 'Mum, I’m ever so bored. Can we start home schooling now?' And so they did."

"This is Jack Frost signing off for the season here at KMJR AM. Wishing you and yours the merriest of Christmases and a 2010 that is cooler than a space odyessy!"

Wishing all of you wonderful ladies that stop in once and a while and catch up with me and anyone else who's reading a wonderful Merry Christmas with lots of family, fun, rejoicing, and of course, hot chocolate!!
We're off to see the family on the east side of the mountains, so we'll see you next year!!
I'll try to stop in once in a while with a few photos from our trip.
My God bless you and keep you safe this Christmas season.

Did I Do That?

My Christmas bunting is done! But seriously, i can't believe i did it! Know why?

'Cause it looks so darn cute, that's why?

However, i stressed about it so much and so long, we are behind in our baking....

Sorry, Santa.
We'll try to catch up tomorrow!
And in the new year, i'll post a tute for bunting, cause it was easy peasy, but i have a few ideas for us beginners!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas from St. Vinnie's

We found this sweet little angel wreath that is really meant for holding candles,

and this adorable little tree recently at St. Vinnies.

Sure, separately, eeh, not to die for.
But, together......

they are so sweet they could give you a cavity!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Santa Baby

Today we visited Santa at his home away from home in a nearby city. Cookie Monster especially loves it because she can feed Santa's reindeer ...

and she loves Ewah, the talking Military Parrot, who plays peek-a-boo.

First we write our letter and place it in Santa's mailbox.

Then we feed Rudolph and the rest of the gang

Then we visit the big man, himself.

Did you know that Rudolph has his own chicken too???

Our visits with Santa occur at a local zoological society. It's a small rehab zoo, maybe 8-10 animals. During Christmas, they present the animals in the zoo as Santa's helpers. The tigers help make the candy canes, the llamas are the South American sleigh team, the lemurs are his sentinals, the emus are his Australian landing crew, and the African cranes are his security force. Dag gummit if i can't remember what the cougars do--i believe they are his ushers, but i could be wrong. Very cute ideas though, to get the ol' imagination movin'!

Also very cute is something that i think most Americans would proudly display on their front lawns....(well, okay, maybe only if it had a loud, annoying generator and was made from cheap nylon fabric) :o)

I'd totally love one of these! I'd make bunny ears for Easter, and he could carry a little parasol and some flowers in his mouth for May. A bat mask at Halloween! Not to mention the lamp shade and feather boa for birthday parties!

Sunday, December 20, 2009


A few years ago, i wanted to find some holiday traditions of the different countries that our families hail from to inspire C. Monster's curiosity about this big ol' world and our family. When reading about Norway, i found the most adorable tradition to share with her--and you know, you really have to look hard to find some Norwegian traditions that a child or someone who is not Norwegian can stomach (my case stands rested at Lutefisk--we tried attending a Christmas celebration and craft fair at the Leif Erickson Hall, but that smorgasbord was a bit too much!)

So, after reading this book and doing a little research on the internets, i decided to go with the Julenisses. Nisses themselves are about the cutest little story i've ever heard!

I remember the first Christmas we had the music boxes, and when i played one, C. Monster came toddler running down the hall and asked "Wat wah dat, Mama?" That was the beginning of the Julenisse tradition in our house. And to get her imagination all wound up, i told her the tinkling must be the sound of the nisse running by--with bells on his shoes, just like she had.

It's that time of year again when we drag out the mini music boxes with their tinkly versions of Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and Jingle Bells and crank on one each day. Moose thinks i'm crazy, but C.m. has loved the Julenisse ever since she was a little wee one.

Mainly because you never know when the 'Nisse is going to show up throughout the year! Sometimes when she is being an extremely helpful girl, she'll hear the tinkling of the 'Nisse who's come to check up on her. And he definitely makes a point to show up when she's being a bit naughty. Tsk! Tsk! Tsk!

So this week, especially, is such fun for me, as i pull out the music boxes while Moose and her are reading for bedtime. Especially perfect as there is a squeaky floor board just near her room. She'll hear the music over Daddy's imitation of a whatever he is reading about that night and that floor board squeak, then you hear, "Listen, Daddy! The Nisse's here! Heee hee hee hee"

Don'tcha just love Christmastime!?!

For more on Norwegian Christmas traditions click here

Friday, December 18, 2009

Dinner, Anyone?

Tonight, it's ravioli and meatballs at our place.

When Cookie Monster received her play kitchen a few years ago, i started trying my hand at constructing simple felt food. She loved ravioli so much then, hence that was the first food i made for her. One of her dear friends absolutely loves the ravioli. So that is what C.m. wanted to give him for his Christmas present this year--per his request.
The ravioli is pretty straight forward and one sheet of pasta coloured eco-craft felt will yield 9 squares (or 4 raviolis, buy the time your done). Definitely the sewing machine is much faster than handsewn. I stuff mine with leftover fabric trimmings or cotton balls
(which, of course, are not "leftover"). :o)

For the sauce, i recently came across a great colour of eco-craft felt that looks more like stewed pasta sauce than a bad shade of cheap red lipstick. :o) Simple again, just let your scissors wander and you should be able to get up to two servings of pasta sauce from one sheet of felt.
Then comes the tricky part. Ri asked if we could make meatballs for Hunt and her. Finding a fabric or yarn that lends itself to the texture and colour of a meatball is not easy. And i had hoped if i had to resort to yarn, that i could use wool to make a medium sized ball, then felt it, however........ :o\ So Lion Brand came through with their organic cotton yarn, and with a pattern for fuzzballs that i hunted down at Crochet Pattern Central from Planet June's blog, i was able to make something pretty realistic looking.
Dat's zum spicy meatahball, eh?

But what couldn't have been "designed" better are Cookie Monster's notes to her friend.
Just another reason we can't wait for Christmas around here!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Decision Day

Oh, if only all the world's problems boiled down to something so simple, eh?
(Then maybe Pres. Obama could figure it out for himself, instead of relying on all the Ol' Hasbeens to do it for him--i am sooooo peeved at that gentleman right now. However, i digress.)
Back to important matters at hand....that i can do something about and reap instant gratification (unlike Nat'lised Health Care.)

I am having a crafter's dilemma of gargantuan proportions.
And incidentally, this is why most projects i undertake don't get completed...i tend to overthink these kinds of things.
I am making something cheery....something that i can't wait to hang up this year ("this" & "year" being the operative words, seeing that it is now just 7 days till Christmas!)

I'm making my first Christmas sewing project that i intend to keep (hence the indecision, as i will be staring at it and judging it and picking it apart for years to come.) Sure, it's easy enough to make something for someone to give them for Christmas because they won't be looking at where you really could have sewn a straighter seam or taking out the ruler to make sure your hemlines are perfect all the way around--and neither will you because it won't be in our possession anymore. :o)
So, i am putting it up for a vote....
should triangles for bunting be 4x9 inches (top)
or 3.5 x 7 inches (bottom)?

Then, in the big scheme of vicious life circles and the gnashing of teeth in all the sensetive places and all that, i realised by re-reading my post that i could infact be doing the same durn'd thing that Pres. Obama is doing himself.

Don'tcha just hate that!??!?

Maybe i'll have to do something completely whacky, cuckoo, and nutso and actually put on the big girl grunties, make the executive decision, and make the triangles 4 x 8 inches. :o)
Regardless, i think it needs more freezer paper templates, don't you?

Have a great day, everyone!

Whew! Just In The "Nick" Of Time

We've been busy sewing this week. Hopefully we'll finish the "presents" tomorrow, and then we can do the fun stuff: like more fabric Christmas decor. Needless to say, we were so behind that the Christmas package to our family in Germany will arrive quite well into the New Year, but we've finished it all today. C.m. coloured some wooden Christmas ornaments and painted them with glitter for her "Grandma in Germany".

These are the napkins i've sewn for my sister in Germany. We were exchange students that stayed with each other's family what back when, and since she came to stay with us while we lived in AZ, i thought she'd get a kick out of these. They are decidedly just Christmas-y enough, yet also not too Christmas-y that one couldn't use them all year long.

I was going to make a set for me too, but i decided that i liked the fabrics so much that i am going to have to learn to quilt to make a quilt with them! Mom, we can start working on C.m.'s chicken quilt anytime so i can get all my practice in on that!! :o) Just wishing that i could have known so that i could buy enough fabric for the back of a quilt in that saguaro pattern. That is such a hoot!

And we finished our Crafty Crow Kids Ornament Exchange ornaments too this week.

The theme this year was Fairy Tales. And of course, my child would have to pick something out of the ordinary like "Brementown Musicians." :o) So she helped me surf the 'nets to find pictures of the animals, then we traced the patterns from pictures. First i tried broadcloth, but it got increasingly harder to make the ornaments look like their intended shape, and along with that it required more of my handiwork and less of Cookie's, which was totally not the point. So, in the end, we decided she would make the dog--and i think it's more charming than my crazy chicken and donkey. I do like the folk artsy-ness of the donkey, however!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Goodies For Dance Teachers

Just a few goodies we made last Friday for Saturday's activities. Strawberry bread decorated with clippings from our holly and spruce trees, Mama Mac's (that's me) Hot Cocoa Stirring Sticks with's added touch--lotsa sprinkles (and a good picture of my recently thrifted Pyrex mixing bowl, and a Red Velvet cake from our favourite grocer's bakery (that closes at the end of the hoo) with decorations by our little Irish Dancer.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A Carolin' We Will Go...And Other Things That Tickled Me Today

Cookie Monster and i hopped into a thrift shop today while we were out and about and we found some cute things at their 50% off Christmas sale. I thought these angels were darling. They came as part of an entertaining pack...they're coasters and there are matching napkins also. But since they are unwrapped, i'll have to find another use for the napkins. The coasters i thought would make really sweet Christmas tags for packages. We also really liked these two books--Carols for the Family is from 1957 from a local music store called Ulmer's. Christmas Carols is from 1952. Since C.m. has been practicing songs on the piano--figuring out how to play her favourites by ear, we've been talking about piano lessons sometime. Since she loves Christmas music so much, i figured these would make a good addition to our collection.

There is also something she bought for me for Christmas that i am dying to show you, but i can't tell or snap a picture until she gives it to me. I am trying my hardest to forget about it--but darn it if it isn't so cute.
With all the really neat stuff from yesteryear popping up in the thrifts i figured i'd be able to find a little last minute something for my family in Germany to send with their gifts. C.m. was trying to help, but all she heard me saying was, "Oh, look that so cute!" She finally replied, "Momma, if there's something you'd like for Christmas, i'll buy it for you!" I showed her a couple things i couldn't decide on from the $1 table. So she picked one and used some of her birthday money from Uncle Paul to buy it. I told her i would pay her back, but she insists that she wanted to get something for me for Christmas and she will not let me pay. She was so cute going around the store saying, "Momma, really, i can buy you something for Christmas. Just let me know." And she bought herself a little handmade wooden clothespin "soldier" ornament--he's more like a cowboy actually. When we left the store, i heard her saying, "Okay Momma, just forget about what your Christmas present will be. When we get home, i'll need help finding a box for it. And maybe some help with the wrapping it up. hee hee hee."
She's such a swell kiddo! She's been acting like a little grown up all day today--carrying her little purse and shopping for notions at whatever store we were in and helping hunt down the Nutella in Costco. I noticed her attitude this morning--it all started at her dental cleaning when her dentist, a super swell guy himself, pulled out his "trophey" we made him from her baby tooth that he reconstructed from when she was 18 months or so--the tooth's surface had completely eroded, so he shaved it down to a point and used epoxy to build such a real looking tooth--helped her get through learning to speak and school which could have been a disaster without a front tooth! When it fell out, we painted a little wooden flowerpot gold and placed the reconstructed baby tooth on top and wrote "World's Best DDS!" on it. When C.m. saw him pull it out of the drawer this morning and heard him exclaim, "Look what i still have," with his super wily grin, she was so tickled! Later, over lunch she was exclaiming, "Momma, i can't believe that Doc H. still has that trophey we made him! He's such a silly guy, but i just love him!" :o) Such a little grown up girl!

Merry Christmas From Goodwill

Let's just say i need not "covet" these any longer, although truthfully, until i saw them, i hadn't known i was coveting them. :o)

Well, "covet" may be a strong word...things i "covet" tend to be healthy things like time with my family, time with my parents, and a farm of our own (someday).

But once i saw them sitting just like this
on the Christmas shelves at the Goodwill, i knew i couldn't NOT return home without them.

Which bring us to curious thrifting behaviour, eh? (again) Oy! First of all, from me. Why would i feel i couldn't return home without something that i had previously not known i wanted? Also, why would one feel this way about something with no price tag on it? Even more curious, i know. Only at a thrift shop, eh? Then there was a lady shopping in the same aisle, hogging the place, sorting through every little thing. Anytime someone would approach her she'd look up and sneer at them. Tis the season, eh? These adorable bowls and cups were at her eye level. She was sorting through Christmas themed saucers and cups the next shelf down, and the gentleman with her was sitting on the floor was sorting through the plates and glasses, both grumbling all the way. Merry Christmas! Lord knows what they were looking for?! I waited my turn on the other side of the aisle, and figured the way they were scouring the shelves, that they would have taken the best stuff.

As soon as i turned the corner, i shuddered. I couldn't believe it! So cute it could give you a cavity. Wondering if they were like the Tom and Jerry collectibles i'd seen when looking up Fire King and Pyrex info. I grabbed them and continued my stroll around the store.

The more i looked at them, my grip tightened. Especially scary because of their lack of a price tag. The only marking they had on them were an "A" nestled inside an "H", but i had no idea what that meant. Was i willing to let them go if they were more than $10? Wishing i could channel my Grandma W. right about then, as she was an infamous antique dealer back East back in the day when i was more interested in Barbies, Cabbage Patch Kids, and Micro-machines. Sometimes i wonder how people like her learned all they did about the collectibles and antiques of their day without the internet.

Not seeing anything else particularly interesting other than a bunch of Pyrex dishes with no lids, i figured i'd mosy up front and find a store manager and ask her the damage on the cute little set. The cashier was happy to help find her and when questioned, the manager spoke music to my ears, "Those will be 99 cents." The cashier said, "Yeah, okay, for each piece, right?" "No, for the whole thing. It's the 99 cent holiday sale," replied the beautiful, kind, and ever so hard working store manager!! :o) It took such restraint not to hug her right then and there.

The cashier was taken aback--i think she might have had the same idea i had floating around in my head....that these had to be a vintage collectible of some sort. Honestly, though, there is know denying their cuteness!! And the funniest thing, was the lady and the gentleman that i had seen in the Christmas aisle were right there next to me looking at all the other "high priced" Christmas items that the store puts in the display cases. They were looking at a ceramic JMJ night light that was covered in so much glitter that Martha's glitter section would have been put to shame. :o) The lady heard the cashier tell me that she thought i might have just gotten the deal of the century and wondered if i was going to list it somewhere online, so of course interest was piqued. She was asking me were i found such a cute item. I didn't have the heart to tell her that if it had teeth, it could have bit her on the nose.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Crankin' 'Em Out

Oh my! With the cold weather, we've resorted to "lighting up the girls" at night. It looks like we have a little nuclear reactor in our back yard. Sadly, though, it doesn't allow my girls to take their winter vacation--i mean, really?!? 6 eggs!?! Ei yi ei! We've gotten a little over a dozen in just the last 3 days!!

I'd better start working on those our Family Farms egg carton labels for spring and summer! (Not to mention working on cleaning out the fridge straight away after Easter!) :o)

P.S. Our cat can now tell you what the inside of a chicken smells like. Sheesh! Felines!

What Snow?

As with most of the US, we've been freezing lately--which is not a weather trait the Pacific Northwest is known for. During the winter months, when high pressure nestles itself here between the Olympics and the Cascade Ranges, we have beautiful sunny days that can be very, very frigid when Arctic air is pushed down into the area. Days that make you think Art Bell may be on to something with his "Day After Tommorrow"-Global Warming Impact hypothesis. However, when there is a change in air pressure in our area that brings in the storms from the Pacific, and if the Arctic air is still flowing, then we get snow!! Yesterday, it snowed pretty much all day--not the blizzardy kind of snow, but beautiful little flakes fluttering their way down from the Heavens.

And we didn't even have a snow advisory that kicked in until 4pm yesterday that was gonna last all night! As you can imagine, for a person that is infatuated with snow because she grew up in stinkin' Southern AZ where there was no such thing, it was very hard to sleep last night!

So this morning at 6:30 it was time to and much to my disappointment, it was 40 degrees and not a single flake was to be found. And to add insult to injury, the dome is closed (a reference our family uses when the sky is so full of grey clouds, i reminds us of the baseball fields that have retractable rooves.)
Yup, it's official,
Darn Jack Frost...where is he when you need him? Then Mondays wouldn't be so Mondayish!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas Dances 2009

Cookie Monster's Irish Christmas Performance

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Lucky Day

Many blessings to be thankful for today:

1. it was a 6 egg day today! Go Girls!

2. Cookie Monster performed perfectly all 4 of her numbers in the two Christmas recitals (videos to come)

3. An rare afternoon visiting with dear, dear friends over congradulatory cake.

4. A wonderful homily by my bro in law in front of his boss from the archdiocese, and much praise and hullibaloo, in general, from parishoners and the head of clergy afterward about the family. It's very humbling, and although it is kind of people to stop and remark how pleased they are with my bro in law...i feel so guilty that these people treat the family like rockstars. That's a really uncomfortable position to be in, but never the less, i guess it's price you pay for being the family of the awesome priest that they hold so dear.

Friday, December 11, 2009

These Are The Days

We decorated our tree last night.... well, "we" being the operative word, as you can tell from the placement of the majourity of the ornaments that are right at 7 yr. old girl level!

Just this morning, i was waxing on and on about how i couldn't wait for C.m. to grow up and move out so that Moose and i would be able to get a good night's sleep someday (she's taken to not going to bed until 10pm at the earliest! Then shooting out of bed by 6:30am--Oy!) But then i look at the tree, and i wish i could keep her small forever so that our tree could be so painstakingly decorated (even if only just the middle of the tree) by such a sweet little miss who's favourite thing about Christmas is unwrapping the ornaments and wanting to hear stories of how we acquired them.
NOTE TO MYSELF: i thought of a great little decorating idea for her when she gets older: i've saved some of her socks from when she was younger. We have one she used to wear when she was first learning to walk placed on our tree. I was thinking that over the next few years, it would be sweet to collect some of the socks she outgrows--her beloved penguin and moose socks, her socks that look like ballet shoes, her first poodle socks from Irish dancing--and when she moves into her first place and has her first Christmas, i could present her with a "mantle", made of picture rail, with "stockings" (socks) from her early years hung on it. She would really love that!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

RIP Stormin' Norman

Our rooster was a little too much to handle yesterday. His bad attitude started with an attack on my arm this weekend--hardest pinch i've ever had in my life, but what hurt most was that this sucker of a rooster could actually jump up to my arm from the ground--wholly smokes those birds are bullies!

Yesterday, while out for Chicken Recess, i figured he'd gotten over whatever it was that i did (feed him grain and spinach from my hands, give them warm water from the shower instead of filling their bucket up with freezing water out of the garden spigot....), however apparently he didn't like the fact i was outside in my pajamas (which are the warmest things i own) or something, because he started attacking my legs. Full on throwin' himself, rather his claws, into my legs. When i stuck my foot out to try to stop him, he kept head butting and attacking my foot (i love my clogs!) Figurin' i could chase him off with a broom and a piece of metal screen as a shield, he chased me around the yard, trying to attack me any time the girls came near. Moose told me to show him who was boss, but i couldn't. I'm a girl, for cryin' out loud! UGH, i am *such* a girl. hmph!

So, after a few frantic phone calls to Moose from being trapped near the coop or being chased away from the house when i tried to get back in from the cold, he came home ready to take care of business.

The rooster had a sneaking suspicion that his number was up, i was just hoping we could take care of it like last time, and find a family that could use the meat.

I am so sorry, Moose! But thank you for being my knight in, no, that's not it; my farmboy in dusty chaps! :o) Well, okay, you probably aren't ready to call yourself a farmboy just yet, but what city - whimpboy has ever killed a rowdy roo with his two bare hands?? I love you!!

Now, if you'll excuse me, i am going to go make a ground beef and day old bread casserole for my hens, and maybe even throw in a little millet and oats just to spoil them. :o)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Last Call

Yesterday, we took the day off school to watch the events on the tellie as much as we could, but we also took the opportunity to fulfill our lunch date with Moose, because we still can. The officer's procession itself, was staged at McCord Air Force Base, just a few miles away from our church--needless to say, we decided we should try to stay out of the area and find a church to attend Mass at closer to home, since yesterday was a day of higher priority for the people who live and work in Lakewood and who knew the officers personally. The procession ended at an events center called the Tacoma Dome, 10 miles away from McCord. As you can imagine, the procession of police/fire/emergency vehicles extended the entire 10 miles...the tarmac and airstrip at McCord was completely full of emergency vehicles and the surrounding streets were full as well at the start of the procession. Completely mind-blowing seeing that.

While we watched the memorial service eulogies, Cookie Monster remarked about how she especially liked the people speaking about what made the officers smile. She said that taught her more about the people the officers were so that we can know why people are so sad that they are gone. Quite a concept for a little 7 year old brain!

The last call is what kills me--i understand the symbolism, but truthfully, it's so decieving if you are a believer in Heaven. That Last Call that they give for the officers that goes unanswered...isn't it just that we as Earthly beings just can't "hear" them answer just yet? Give them some time....they'll be there in Heaven to watch over their families in due time. And once they're all settled in, those officers will answer many, many calls from their family and friends, i am sure.

Winter Advisory

It's close to Christmas, eh?

I'm thinking the closer we get, the less free time i'll have (or should have) for posting ponderings, etc...especially this week as C.m.'s recitals are coming up Saturday. Whew! And i am feeling a bit down about the officers, as you could tell--i don't like subjecting you all to such deep ponderings each day on here, so i think i'll be taking a bit of a break from writing. We're all busy this time of year too, eh? Maybe a picture a day or two, nothing big--just a little somethin'. 'Cause i know if i wait too long, there'll be entirely way too much for one entry. :o) Plus, this will give me time to do what i truly love during this time of year--which is reading other people's blogs! ;o)

I'll leave you with some pictures of recently acquired Etsy purchases. Etsy is so great, dont'cha think? I really need to get my act together and start a shop and see how it does.

We were in need of a gift for our church's giving tree. Cookie M. wanted to sponsor a little 4 y/o girl specifically because the tag said that she wanted an African American doll. So after seeing all the uninspiring dolls our toy store and one stop shopping had, we decided on Etsy. Traci from TheHandmadeProject made this adorable doll she named Vanessa. C.m. is especially fond of the doll's hair, her polka-dotted stockings, and the fact that the doll wears grunties (our word for undergarments.)
And i feel very blessed to have my new Christmas wreath designed by Barbara of Oodles and Oodles fame!! I love that she uses an overabundance of collected vintage items to design holiday decorations. It was a hard sale to Moose, since it was pink--oh. The. HORROR! I think it will look wonderful in the sports themed, "man den" of a rec room downstairs, especially for "Christmas in July" while the Mariners are stinkin' it up next season! Just kiddin', Moose. :O)

Hoping you all have a peace-filled week! happy getting ready for Christmas!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Dec 8th

Today is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. A day for rejoicing and giving our gratitute to not only God for making Mary, but to Mary for not saying "You know, no thanks, i'm good as i am" when the angel appeared before her, informing her of God's intentions for her life. An awe-inspiring day should you hold Mary in high honour and believe as Catholics do.
However, today, in Western WA and to many people in different parts of our country it will be a difficult day. Today will be a day to mourn the officers brutally killed for no good reason other than just because they were in a police uniform.

I'm struggling's an odd feeling knowing we will be celebrating these two events within hours of each other.
I am having a hard time because if i choose to believe in the history and the idea of the Immaculate Conception, then shouldn't i believe that "everything happens for a reason." It's just that idea that i am struggling with today as are many people. (Now i am not one of these people that believe ferverently that EVERYTHING happens for a reason. Seriously, it wasn't God that forced those cookies in my mouth that caused me to gain 10 lbs.) That being said then, what was "the reason" these 4 honourable and hard working officers, and more importantly decent, compassionate human beings, needed to be taken from the Earth--especially in such a heinous way, from their family and friends and their successful careers defining the people of Lakewood?! Why would God allow such a beautiful creation, being any person--but one in fact in this instance named Maurice Clemmons fall so far from grace and turn into such a dispicable human and do something so evil!! And there's where free will enters into the equation, but really?! Is it a gift that we mere humans can be trusted with???
I know, i know....all things i will find out at the end of my journey, should i make it on the other side of St. Peter, eh? Or maybe i won't. Maybe that is info that God keeps strictly under his cap whether you are a resident of Heaven or....well, definitely if you are not, it's understood you won't, eh?

Here at 8am, we'll be celebrating Mass regarding the creation of Mary and the intricate planning that God had to perform in order to create a completely sinless Son who would be worthy of such power. Then at 1pm, we'll be celebrating the funerals of these officers listed above who were readying themselves for work at a local coffee establishment and didn't know they would lose their lives in an ambush that day.
It's hard to wonder about that part of God's plan, you know?
And if you have a few spare moments today, please read the obituaries of the officers above and pray for them--for their families' peace, especially their children, and for law enforcement in our entire nation. Many officers in our area will be on edge for many, many years to come. Also for the misguided soul of Maurice Clemmons, who now with his death, hasn't another chance to make that U-turn and come to terms with the gravity of his life's choices and fully repent, and all those family members and friends who were so quick to help him elude the police and are now facing possible murder and accessory to murder charges, which truthfully speaking, are the least of their worries.
It's all so very tragic!

Monday, December 7, 2009


Yesterday, i spent most of the day in the kitchen cooking: bread, Barb's peanut butter cookies
with my added little kicks of cinnamon and brown sugar (thanks, Barb for such an easy recipe to make when we have people coming over to work on the house!), and pumpkin risotto.

I think "Cookie Ray" (as we've been nicknaming her lately) was feeling a little left out of the events with Moose busy working on the water line and Momma in the kitchen. So when we finally sat down to our meal, C.m. said she was going to make us our breakfast and dinner in her little kitchen.

I don't know what she likes best: pretend waitressing or pretend cooking. But here was breakfast--one fried egg, a cherry and strawberry, and a piece of toast with butter. Also vanilla tea in a fancy glass. :O) Oh, and the green farfalle, that's really supposed to be parsley. :o)

After b-fast came dinner. Boy, we must have looked famished! (Momma-made) Ravioli with mushrooms, peas and carrots, a tomato and a baked potato.

And if that wasn't enough....dessert followed.
A cherry, some cookies, and a Cafe au Lait.

Is my kid gonna be a great little homemaker, or what?
If we're lucky, she may live near us one day so we can hope for her leftovers!

Then when the second dinner came around, it was time to help Moose make his dad's famous cottage cheese pancakes. C.m. was excited to use the first of our blue eggs.
As you can imagine, it looks like we'll both be in our kitchens all day today, just working on the clean up! :o) And from all that good food, i think i need to run around in place for a few minutes today while i do the least it would help us stay warm today too. 24 degrees with a wind chill of 8. Brrrr! Stay warm, everyone!!

Sunday, December 6, 2009


What a week. We've been so busy with school and helping friends and tackling holiday errands. Thankfully, the shopping is over and we can concentrate on the season. Thursday found us home enjoying school and holiday decorating when a friend in need called. She needed us to pick up her son from school as she was going to be late, otherwise. Being that these are our close friends, you can deduce the answer. :o)

That evening, C.m. and her friend passed the time giggling and sipping hot chocolate and playing defenders that were going to capture me...or atleast, fight me off with a Nerf gun when i gave the five minute 'fore departure warning. :o) You can also deduce just how long that 5 minutes turned out to be. ;o)

Friday we spent the morning and the a good portion of the afternoon saying "goodbye" to one of our beloved stores with our dear friend from the night before. This store is "beloved", as you can imagine, because it is the kind of grocery store where spending 4 and 1/2 hours in chatting away with your best friend and gnoshing on fresh pastries from Seattle bakeries and yummy coffee drinks is not an activity that is frowned upon by employees there at all. :o) Like Cheers, however you can also finish grocery shopping for the week--which took us another hour, since we lingered in the kitchen gadget section and stopped to talk to other acquaintances from the area that just happened to be shopping that day too. :o)

Saturday, we headed off to Sumner in search of the family Christmas tree. Beautiful, yet chilly yesterday. We headed to a place called Red Barn Tree Farm where we did not spy any barns, let alone red ones, however, there were plenty of trees to be had. And we spied this cool old truck.

And to boot, some friends that Moose works with spied us out in the field luckily, so we were able to catch up and sneak peeks at each other's little ones. Any other time of year, you can go months without running into anyone out and about! Love thoses kinda of Christmas presents in such a big world we live in!!

Then we made it to the Santa parade just in time. Here are a few pictures of things that struck me as amusing:

well, okay, this is not amusing at brings tears to my eyes and thankfullness to my heart.

And finally, Jolly Ol' Nick in an old SFD engine.
After Santa's parade, we had some time to kill before Mass, so we shopped.
The antique store i visited had these cute candy stockings.

and a new tree topper, since we are erecting two trees this year (one real and one fake), we needed another. I am anxious to do some research on this as it says it was handcrafted in West Germany for Shiny Brite.

We truely liked it for it's uniqueness though.
And being from West Germany, it will remind us of our family friend who passed away in October.

Today we are having our cherry tree taken down and our 200' of English Laurel hedge thinned. Also, Moose gets to contend with a leaky water line. After receiving a water bill for the last two months that equated the water bills of our hot summer garden watering days, we knew something was amiss. Moose dug around out back and found a HUGE leak in the line out by the chicken coop. That sucker was losing over 1,000 gallons a day! Bah Humbug!
I'll be manning the sewing machine here once i get this finished and hopefully will have some more crafty posts this week as well as some more pictures of so newly acquired cuteness from talented Etsy know who you are!
Hope you have a great start to the week!