Tuesday, December 28, 2021

And Now Winter

 This is our few weeks of winter. I love it, seeing the snow, almost down to the valley. The rain, which is flooding my yard and flowerbeds. To sit in front of the fire, with a cozy blanket and reading books. 

As in times past, I have put all of December away. Christmas Tree, outside lights, everything that I put out in November. I think I just got into the habit. When we used to get a real Christmas tree, by the time the 25th rolled around it was a fire hazard. Then of course, we had six kids, if there was a baby that year, the baby would undecorate the tree, and leave a trail of ornaments that I would be picking up and putting back on the tree. Or, my particular favorite. My oldest daughter had an very large Iguana. She would let him go in the living room and he would always make for the top of the Christmas tree. Then like a distorted angel, sit on the tree top, blinking looking down at all of the faces laughing at his funny face. As she tried to get him out of the tree, his little hands would pull ornaments off and garland and I would decorate it all back. Or they played in the tree the games they had made up that normally they played outside, but the tree was such a warmer place to be.

 So, that was when I got into the habit. Putting things away. I purposely always got ornaments and my Nativity that wouldn't break, because I wanted them to love Christmas and be able to touch and handle everything. This was the first year, I decorated my tree with glass. It was a pretty tree, but so sad as I had no Iguanas to climb to the top. Aw good times. 

I decorated my mantel yesterday. I told Ron it looks like I am doing my January mantel for the Gold Rush of 1849. Ron got some of his grandpa's things from his mom and we were going through boxes and there was this great tiny anvil and that tiny hammer. He was a jewelry maker and these were some of his tools. In the background is his rock hammer too. He was also a rock hound and taught Ron all about polishing rocks. He was a very, very interesting man. 

So in the spirit of the winter, and the gold rush, my mantel for January. I should have lit the fire. That would have made a better picture. My kids know what a great fan I am of Bigfoot so my youngest son Peter got that for me. One day I will tell you about my experiences. 

I wish you the best of days, 


Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Robert Frost

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Odds and Ends

 Its mid December and what a nice December it has been. We got 1.27 inches of rain yesterday. Snow is on the mountains and its crisp and cold. The sky is crystal blue and it really feels like a long lost Christmas to me. Last night the clouds cleared and I could see Venus and it reminded me of the star I used to sing to so long ago. I was thinking about it as I stood there looking up. I think my neighbors would think I was nuts if I broke into Silent Night or Away in the manger. 

That first Christmas after my Mom died, I hated being in the house. Nothing I could do could make our house feel like home. I tried to do everything she had done at Christmas. I had put the Nativity on the mantel. We had decorated the tree with all of her favorite ornaments. We had made paper chains and had decorated with red and green crepe paper, just like she taught us. I even strung popcorn for the tree. But the silence was deafening. The house always seemed cold. I took to staying outside as much as I could. In the pasture between our house and my grandparents house (what became my future yard and my old house before this one.) I would climb up on a metal calf stanchion. I would sit there and sing to the star of what I imagined was the star over baby Jesus's calf trough. It was cold then too, but it was warmer than being in the empty house. My little brother and my sister were in my grandparents house until my Dad came home from work, and fixed us Rice a Roni for dinner. ( That was all he knew how to fix after my Mom died. We ate every flavor that winter, which was chicken and beef.) 

One night as I was singing my heart out in the dark, and feeling festive. We had learned We Wish You a Merry Christmas at school. Plus a little Rudolph the Reindeer. When the back door opened and Papa said, "Kim! You alright?" I said, " Yes, Papa I am okay." I very quietly climbed down and went into the house. That year was a very hard Christmas, my Dad was at his new girlfriends house, with her family. 
By February he was remarried and life became as Charles Dickens puts it in The Tale of Two Cities, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..." But that is for a different story. Christmas is always bittersweet, don't you think? 

I have had so much fun this year. I finished this rug again. I have no idea where my rug went. I am afraid it got lost in the move. I decided I needed another one. I finished it yesterday. This is one of Cathy's patterns. I love her patterns.

 I have been working on my counted cross stitch too. 

Those patterns are from The Humble Stitcher and from Stacy Nash.

I almost forgot this one from The Old Tattered Flag. I finally got it hung.

That was a fun rug to make. It was one of those that I made in about two days, I just couldn't leave it alone. Now trying to finish it was another story. I finally tried in my mind to think of it as a pillow. But it was still hard to do. But its hung now and it was a really fun little project. I don't normally buy kits, but I did with this one and I was so glad I did. 

Lauren on her blog the other day, showed this pattern from DoodleDog Primitives, so I bought it and I am working on it now. 
Its so much fun to have a project like this before I jump back into my big rugs. I am working on Magdalena's Goat. I bought my pattern from Saundra. (Saundra's picture, not mine)

I hope you have a lovely creative day. I feel so overwhelmed everyday, but God's continued goodness. 
I keep my eyes peeled for all of the goodness I see, and try and shut my eyes to those things I know I cannot change, and just turn to prayer about those other things. I figure, that this is really and truly God's deal and not any of my business. No sense getting myself in a snit. At this stage of life all it does is shorten my life and I miss all of the treasures I should be paying attention to and laughter is the best medicine. 

Merry Christmas

" The immense step from the Babe at Bethlehem to the living, reigning triumphant Lord Jesus, returning to earth for His own people - that is the glorious truth proclaimed throughout Scripture. As the bells ring out the joys of Christmas, may we also be alert for the final trumpet that will announce His return, when we shall always be with Him."
- Alan Redpath

Monday, December 6, 2021

Happy December!

 I know its been months since I last blogged. I can never remember why I don't blog and then I sit at the computer and I remember. My pictures are so messed up on my computer it takes me hours to upload and then by the time I have done that, I can't remember what I sat down here to write. I really do have lots of posts that just sit there and never go anyplace. I decided that since I am waking up at 4:30 and writing posts its time I did it for real even if it takes me hours.

 I know that in January at the beginning of 2021 I started of the year by saying. 

I was going to be" enchanted by the unexpected." Truthfully, I did try to live that way, but then the unexpected took over and it left me just trying to keep my footing. 

I think it became more like this. " Sometimes you have to let go of the picture of what you thought life would be like and learn to find joy in the story you are living." 

I have tried to focus on the joy in the moment and let those things I thought were so important just go and focus on the bits are just so good. 

1. Laughter

2. Family

3. Health

Sometimes it means saying no to things that I thought were good and embracing the hard things that come my way. Because in those moments, joy overwhelms me and I can just feel like dancing.

I did make some rugs. I will show them to you just so you can see I do hook. 

They were fun, to finish and to have them out on the floor.  Thanksgiving was nice. As per usual, I made too much food. 
Now to December. 
Here are a few things I have been making. 

I also made those mercury looking ornaments. I really liked making those. I have wanted to forever. I wish I had made more. They turned out just like I wanted. Which is rare for me. To like what I make and not want to change it. I am learning the hard way, make it and just leave it alone. We planted pansies and snapdragons last weekend. I wasn't very happy about getting on my hands and knees in the wet mud, but when I pulled in the driveway yesterday, I loved seeing all of the happy flowers in my flowerbed. 

One of my favorite things this year is still my mantel. I wish I could show you how much I fool with it. Its like my favorite job in the whole world. I think it was worth moving just to have this fireplace. 

I just wanted to drop in and tell you, yes, I am still around. Now onto the one thing I haven't finished is decorating the Christmas tree. Our two youngest sons, bought a house. They will be moving next week and they are going to take my piano and my dining room table. I am so excited. That dining room table is too big for my dining room and they bought a really big house so they have room. Empty or almost empty rooms really make me happy and let my mind dream. I will start haunting antique stores looking at old farm tables if I can find one. Or maybe I can talk Ron into making me one. Wink, Wink. 

Have a wonderful happy new week in December. 


"If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.” — Anne Bradstreet

I read an old book by Anne Bradstreet this fall. I really liked her, even if history has not been kind to her. She was a courageous woman who was judged harshly by her peers.