Wednesday, December 31, 2008

on this last day of 2008

I wish everyone the very best in 2009. May all your hopes, wishes and dreams come to pass, and may you soar with happiness.

I want to thank every one who has commented and to let you know that it means a lot to me. If I cannot thank you individually, please know that you are still very much appreciated. All the best in 2009!

Not to back step, but I have added a button to my site to "Save Handmade". The Consumer Products Safety Improvement Act will go into effect on February 10, 2009 and will keep small handmade toy businesses from operating any more. Each product needs to be tested for all sorts of safe features, costing these business hundreds of dollars per product. They cannot continue in business with this kind of cost in their budget. Please check out Cool Mom Picks and contact any one and every one listed and linked on her site. This could affect you, let's all help each other.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Aha, rain today . . .

We got some rain - NOT snow - and it was dripping from every where. More places than I knew it could drip from! But thankfully not on the inside of the house. We are having a heat wave, yeah, a heat wave. About 34-39 for highs this week.

I went to the local store today and WOW, talk about slushy roads . . . phew! I have a 4X4 and I was all over our roads here in the neighborhood. Slick as snot is about all I can think of to compare it to. Not nice I know, but truthful! The slush is about 9-12 inches deep, and it moves your vehicle ALL over the road.

I had a wonderful Christmas, got some great presents; a 25' Stanley Tape Measure (all my other ones have disappeared), some of those stick to your sock foot warmer thingies (love them), and for my collection, some silver colored Reindeer (not Rudolphs).

I went to Dale's to help him move some snow, ha, ha, ha, SNOW . . . he had to clear his shop roof and the camp trailer. They had at least 2 feet of snow on them, and even though the shop would be OK, the trailer had to be cleared or it would start to sag in the middle - not good. He got it, no problem, but the walkways had to be cleared. A friend brought his snow blower up to help, but there is always corners that need a good shovel. I have experience in that department! I helped. It felt good that I could help him for a change.

I filled my wood box today too. Damn that thing is a huge cavernous beast when it's empty! Nice and friendly when full, but this afternoon it only had 8 pieces left - they seemed so little and tiny way down there in the bottom of the box. It now has so much that the lid won't close. I like it that way! The box measures 2 x 2 x 4 feet - doesn't seem that big UNTIL you have to fill it! It's more than full now!

I've been gathering turkey carcasses since Thanksgiving and am in charge of cooking New Years Eve dinner - every year, that's my thing! I need to hit the store for some carrots, broth and spaghetti noodles. The rest of the ingredients are in the cupboard. It has to make enough to feed about 12 - 14 people...... Hmmm . . . do I have a big enough pot??? No, but I'll start in the one I have and since I have trouble lifting those huge 16 qt pots, I will take two pots, combine the soup in Candy's one HUGE pot, and we will all eat merrily ever after!!! LOL

I will not be around for the Midnight Party - my dog freaks. I will take her home about 11:30 (if I last that long!) and sit with her. Here where we live there will be fireworks (not legal), and gun shots (definitely NOT legal), and the dog, all 60 lbs of her, will try to crawl up on my shoulders. Even though she is on medication, it is just too much for her. I will turn the stereo up, plug my ears, and hold the dog. Interesting picture to say the least, but I will do what it takes to keep the dog at least half way sane.

You all have a safe and sane New Years!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Snow anyone??

I've been busy shoveling snow for at least two weeks! I'm getting tired of this, the shoveling not the snow... I bundle up to the point that I can hardly move, long johns, sweat pants and my quilted bib overalls. On top, I have a chemise, sweat shirt, scarf and big jacket. And my baseball cap. On my feet I have huge, gigantic, rated to 100 degrees below 0 boots. Just watch me move . . . LOL. Just like when you bundle your kids to go play in the snow, and they can't move . . .

I love the winter, but I have to be warm. Shoveling does that! I was up on the roof yesterday to get the 2 feet of snow off. Really, really hard work. And slippery on a metal roof. It might not have that much of a pitch, but when you are on a wet, even slightly slanted, roof, you can do the slip and slide thing real fast!

Today my friend Dale came down and got the snow off the truck camper; another 18" off that! There was just a skiff of snow left, but we put a tarp over it to make it easier to remove future snow - and I guarantee there will be more snow. He has an ATV with a blade so clearing the driveway gets done a lot easier than if I had to shovel that! It is a circular driveway and I like both ends open, but if I had to shovel it, I would only do from the street to the carport. Thank goodness for Dale and the ATV!!!

I feel better having the roof, (wobbly) carport, metal shed and camper cleared off. I worry - a lot! There is a tree close to the house by my bedroom and when the snow clumps start to fall off, it sounds and feels like the whole tree is coming down. I'd love a new house, but not by a collapsed roof - what would I do until a new one could be put in place????? and getting my belongings out before they got ruined... not something I want to think about - that's why I crawl up there to GET IT OFF!

We are suppose to have a heat wave next week; in the mid 30's with some rain and snow! That will help a bit, but I don't know what's coming after that. I'd rather clear the roof and not take the chance. But, I tell you, I'm getting too darn old to be climbing ladders and clearing roofs!!! I hurt so bad last night I had a hard time getting to sleep. Hot shower and ibuprofen not withstanding!

Yup, and after that, I had to fill the wood box . . . with Dale's help! But, you know, the chores get done and THEN I can collapse. And I did.

The snow on the truck in the picture is not that much yet - we had more snow last winter by February.... I know, I know, February is way off in the future and who knows what lurks in them thar clouds!!!!

Have fun in the snow, but stay safe, and drive careful if you have to go out. I guess this only applies to those of us in snow country, but so far this season, there seem to be a lot of us in snow country. Don't forget to take a sense of humor and patience along when you go anywhere.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Very Merry Chritmas

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas, and peace and love.

I spoke with my Mom at 8:30 a.m., my time, 5:30 her time. She lives in Denmark and it is already Christmas Eve there. It is always nice to speak with her and I wish I could do it more than once a month. She is 81 and even though there isn't too much new going on in her life, I enjoy talking to her. We share lots of laughter and the time runs away from us, today we talked for 45 minutes, but that's OK.

I enjoy my Christmas Eve, but for me the BIG celebration takes place tomorrow. I've become Americanized over the last 50 years. I will still light candles tonight and enjoy the peace (and snow!).

Today I'm cooking and wrapping presents. My evening will be quiet, but I need that before the total fun and hoopla of tomorrow.

Again, wishing you Peace, Happiness and Love this Christmas Eve.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

down to the wire

Well, Christmas is just about here, and I only have to wrap presents and make red cabbage for dinner. I won't make the cabbage until tomorrow afternoon.

I want it to sit and 'steep' in its juice overnight for a better flavor. It's a very simple recipe, the only thing you don't see sitting in the picture is a little bit of butter, some sugar, just a half teaspoon, and some salt & pepper.

I have made this for both Thanksgiving and Christmas every year for the last 10 years. Those are the only times that I make it, so it becomes a holiday treat.

The pot is probably 45 years old! Revere ware 5 1/2 qt. It was my Mom's before she moved back to Denmark. It is pretty pitted on the inside, but I don't have the heart to get rid of it, so I just scrub very, very, well with a stiff brush. I have never gotten sick from anything made in it. It is my stew pot, spaghetti pot, soup pot. I love the way it cooks and wonder if I could ever find any other pot to replace it with.

OK, enough of my cooking pot ramblings. I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. Stay safe, and warm, and if you're traveling keep your sense of humor and patience close at hand.

Much Love and Many Hugs to all!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

I think I'm done with . . .

making Christmas presents! With only 3 days left, that's a good thing!. Anything else I make in the next few day will be purely an extra gift; a neighbor maybe or an extra guest Christmas morning.

This ornament was made from a picture I saw - no directions, just a picture. I will make more of these (for next year) but not the way I did it this time! I'll have to experiment. It was made for one of the ladies that I've spoiled with an ornament each year. I sure hope she likes it.

This one is small, only 1 3/4" across. The recipient of this one is also getting another present, but she has a small tree and likes the small ornaments. Ya think?

I knit these for me. They were knit at night when I had to just sit and relax before going to bed. It is just a simple 40 stitches, basic dish cloth, but I like them lots.

With all the snow that has been falling all over the country, I sure hope everyone takes care in their travels, whether you are going a mile or across the country. It is bad out there in most places.

My daughter is going from Texas to Nebraska and I worry. I know what the roads can be like, I use to live in Nebraska. Lots more ice than I get here in my area.

Take care everyone!!!

Many wishes for a wonderful Christmas.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A whole week's gone by

I can't believe it's been a week since I last posted!

Today is my grandson's birthday - 13. I don't know him well since he lives in Texas and I in Oregon. It is hard for either family to travel, so I have to rely on my daughter to tell me what he's jup to and to send pictures of all the kids (which she can be bad doing! - Love you Hon!!!!) In most of the pictures that I have of him, he looks like he is up to no good as soon as the picture has been taken! He is a very nice looking young man and has a charming smile. He is the youngest of the grandkids behind two sisters, ages almost 21 and almost 19!

I had my daughter when I was very, very, very young! Don't even go there!!!

It has been cold here, no I mean COLD! Like last night is was -6. Today got up to 16, I think. I have had the faucets trickilin for the last 3 days and I still froze up. Get out the little heater, check the pressure in the tank (off the well). Hmmm, I used the bathroom, flushed, and no trickle from either the bathroom faucet or the one in the kitchen. I called Dale to see what the first thing I should do - take heater to pump house, check pressure - OK, I'm on track. He also said to leave a faucet open - ok - Iwent todo that after I put on the boots, hat, scarf, coat and gloves. Hmmm, water !?!?!?!? I still took the heater down to the pump house, plugged it in for a while. Turned up the trickle at the faucets while I ran to the post office (1 bill - blahhh). Everything worked just fine when I got back.

I had also noticed that the bottom metal piece on my house skirting had big gaps in being attached to the wood part of the skirting. This is a major contributor in my pipes freezing! The wind and the cold just flies right under there and does the freeze thing. My battery charged drill had 2 dead batteries. Oh, fun. I'm out there in 9 degree weather with a manual screw driver, balancing on the balls of my feet trying to attach frozen metal! I had some left over hard insulation from the pump house, that I leaned and packed against the gaps that were remaining. I sure hope it works because I don't want to go through that again! I almost lost my balance and would have landed right on my butt right in the snow. And I only had sweat pants on - no jeans, no long johns, no bib coveralls....... just a quick job - sweat pants! My hind end was sooo cold when I got back in the house it hurt.

I traipse down to the pump house to turn off the heater, but left it there since tonight is also suppose to be very cold.
This is a view from my back door looking up into the trees. COLD.

The next one is still looking out the back door but on the ground and to the right of the one above. You can see the icicles hanging off the roof, and those are after I knocked down the really, really big ones. The kennel is in the corner of the picture, but I could no more put the dog out there in this cold, than I could live there myself. There is only about 5 inches on the ground, but it is crusty.

Joey will only use the cat box if he's in the house and I'm gone. Otherwise, he wants out. Well, sort of. Let's say he needs to go out, but really doesn't want to. I have to coax him to come to the door. He will hem and haw about leaving the top step, and then when he can't stand it any more, he will charge out there amonst the trees. Do his thing, and then he will charge back to the steps, and if I didn't see him coming and forget to open the inner door, he would be flattened against it! He is not happy out there when it is this cold, and don't forget he sinks. He will look for previous foot prints to step in rather than make new ones (unless he's charging!)

If he's slow, and I go in before he decides to come back, he will go around the house to the front, and the following picture shows you how he lets me know he wants in . . . you cannot ignore a cat that will keep that up indefinitely! Thank goodness for aluminum screens - can you imagine what the fiberglass ones would look like? Even these have holes and small tears. Ahhh, Joey, one of the loves of my life.

When the temperature is in the twenties, he's not quite so bad about going out, but will always let me know like this that he wants in - even in summer.

Oh goodie, the Weather Channel just told me it was 3 degrees outside here in our area. I'm going to let you go so I can throw some more wood on the fire!

I can't even think of any thing profound to leave you with except:

STAY WARM!!!!!!!!


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wow . . .

I went back and looked at my post from yesterday, phew, I sounded really, really bad - nothing nice to say about anything! I can usually let things go, just attribute it to the times we live in, but since my trip to the market came out of my pocket, I just let it all out! I need to calm down. LOL

Lets see what I can do today . . . I 'met' another blogger, Betty of Joy in Our Lives. She left a very nice comment on my blog a few days ago, and I thought that she sounded like a wonderful and fun person. I checked out her blog and Boy, was I right. She has a house full of fur children, a great husband and a family that won't quit! I will be following her, and I have listed her in my sidebar, check it out.

My fur kids might not be rescue animals, but they've come to me - I did not look for them, so in a way I did rescue them. I have also had many that have crossed the Rainbow Bridge, and I know we will make quite a commotion when we all meet again.

This post wasn't meant to be sad . . . (as I sniffle at all the memories) but a celebration of all the varied lives that have touched mine. I've had a huge volume of cats through the years, but only 2 dogs. I had Tramp when I was 12 or so. He was literally a Heinz 57. Happy, fun and very lovable. When we moved from the house we lived in, we gave Tramp to our neighbors so he could have a yard and family full of kids. We moved to a small apartment and Tramp would not have been either happy or welcome there.

SueAnn is my current dog type companion. She is now 7. I got her 2 months after moving here to Oregon. At best we figure her birthday as 9-11, and the birth year was 2001. I needed a 'good' memory of that day, and SueAnn has been GREAT! She is part Lab and part Hound. Her nose and voice are Hound, the rest is small black Lab. She has the most expressive face and ears. The ears are floppy, but when she is really listening to something they sort of come up.

She is medium-large at 56 lbs, has a long tail like a whip and smiles and 'talks' to me. She has left bruises on my legs from her tail - I can't believe it doesn't hurt her when she hits anything with that tail! When I say she 'talks', she really does! Not words, but kind of low noises - not barks, she's been told to use her "inside voice" and will kind of "woo,woo". You have to hear her to believe it. And she can keep it up until she gets what she wants (mostly). There are times when I tell her "NO", and she will walk away totally deflated. Makes me laugh, but then she'll get her treat anyway - I'm well trained to follow orders!

She is very afraid of gunfire and thunder storms. Living here in the Southern Oregon Cascades, there is some sort of hunting season going on for most of the year, and SueAnn does NOT like it one bit. If it is off in the distance and only makes a 'pop' she will look to me to see if she should panic or not, but if it is loud and close by, she will come running to be let in, or try to climb on my shoulders! I can sometimes diffuse the fear by asking her "Did they get it?" with an excited tone to my voice, but that doesn't always work. She also dislikes/fears thunderstorms and the summer is fun here - we get our share of them too.

She is on medication to help calm her, but she is still not happy with the sounds. She does not go ballistic like she use to, but she still wants to hide and be in a safe place. I've got a kennel that we tried using, but she doesn't like to be confined either. Aarrrggghhh! I take each incident of gunfire and thunderstorms as they come, but I never know how bad she will get. Desensitizing has been tried and doesn't work - the sounds are not normal, they are recorded and she knows the difference. She "feels" thunderstorms hours before they get here - atmospheric pressure and all that stuff. She will start walking around with her tail sooo tucked that she looks like she doesn't have one, and will stay so close to me that if I stop she will either step on me or I on her! I wish I could help her deal with this, but I don't know what else to try besides more medication and I don't want a doped up dog. Any one have any other ideas?

Sorry this got so long, but that's my SueAnn . . . well, parts of her anyway.

. . . and Christmas is only 14 days away, yup 14 days, two weeks away, that's it. Then you can breathe for a while and start on next year!!!! LOL

I will leave you with this: I try to be the kind of human my dog thinks I am.

(((Hugs))) everyone!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Boy, am I angry . . .

I went to Wal-Mart today - the store we all love to hate! I know the prices of everything I purchase and I can't believe that what I bought today cost $20 MORE than what I got two weeks ago! There are a few prices that have gone down, but most have gone up by at least 10 cents! In two weeks??? How do families do it? I know that I'm ready to cut a few things out, but good gracious, this is ridiculous. I could stand to loose a few pounds, but I prefer to do it myself, not dictated to by what I can afford or not!

I think next time I go to town, I will try a discount market just to see what I end up paying. Probably more, since I won't be going in for another two weeks. I HATE going to town to shop! Don't get me wrong, I like to eat, but, phew!! I do use some packaged, easy to fix meals, but if you compare the ingredients to fresh, I wonder if you come out ahead? Probably not. I also buy a lot of brand name products instead of generic - I tried the generic stuff and found the flavors greatly lacking. Why should I buy cheap and not like the taste, to purchasing brand name and enjoying my own cooking? And I do like my own cooking - LOL . . .

We don't eat a lot of meat, but when we do, I want the leanest and tastiest I can get. Why spend less money on meat that is full of fat and have lots less when done cooking? I want flavorful foods that taste good and fill me up.

Ahhh, why am I ranting? I guess because I can. And, how good for us is the food that we buy? Most has too much fat and too many chemicals. I don't care how good the food producers are at advertising, most skirt the health issue. The FDA needs to really, really check into the claims that are made. Yeah, sure.

Last night I watched a news report on the elderly in Okinawa, Japan. They have a major population OVER 100 years of age. Cancer, Alzheimer's and heart disease are almost unheard of in Okinawa. They eat low fat, low sodium and low chemical content foods. And their portions are not "Super Sized"! We, even I, could learn a lot from these people. Neither do we exercise like we should. I am guilty too. Most of us say we have no time - turn off the TV, computer and all other electronic gadgets, and take a walk each night after dinner. The WHOLE family! Kids and all. Take the dog, it probably needs exercise too!

All this as I just finished two small pork chops with spinach on the side. LOL The chops were cooked in margarine, with Worcesteshire Sauce and water to steam. Worcestershire Sauce - the king of sodium! Not the healthiest, but . . .better than a lot of meals I've cooked. Like lots of mashed potatoes with butter and gravy!

I guess I can only do the best for me, but people need to really look at what they fix and eat. Just my opinion, but shared by many I know.

As a footnote to this - I eat my share of crap too, I love garlic Triscuits and can eat a box in one sitting if I don't watch myself!

I think I should end this - I'm just getting more and more frustrated at the treatment of the people by large corporations. No more than I use to, but shopping today just brought it out in the open.

Speaking of food - here is some 'food' for thought:
How we live our days is how we live our lives.

Hugs to every one. Really! LOL

Friday, December 5, 2008


Not that I'm counting or anything - but the days are starting to go faster and faster . . . and on the 26th they will come to a complete stop. No more, nada, ziltch, over, done . . . that is for another year. Phew.

Every year I keep saying, a few weeks after Christmas, that I will start on the next year. Uh, huh, yup, right!!! I want to, well part of me wants to, the other just sticks its tongue out at me. Well this coming year it will happen. You just watch and see!

Once in a while, I have the tv on in the background of my day, just for some movement and a little noise. There are two sentences that I hear over and over and over again. And I HATE them.

"If I (he, she) can do it, you can do it" or some verbal equivalent. It has been sooo over used that I want to puke!!! Of course the other one (to me) is no better. Ever since Shaker design and/or Minimalism was discovered (?) I have heard the term "Less is more." Aarrrggghhhh! I also HATE that statement. I swear I have heard it forever! less of what? furniture, decorations, dust bunnies, dog hair?????? less what?

These two statements can drive me up a wall, and that's not a pretty sight!

"If I can do it, you can do it" I DON'T WANT TO! How's that? "Less is more." Less is BORING!!!!!

OK, now that I've gotten that said, I feel great! I need to leave to go work out and I can stomp the rest of my aggravation out to my hearts content on the treadmill!!! Works every time! I may not be loosing weight, which I need to, but I'm toning and starting to feel a lot better. I guess the weight will come off eventually??

Oops, just looked at the clock - I'm out of here . . .

Sunday, November 30, 2008

The countdown continues . . .

Yup, 24 days til Christmas! Seems like I've been crafting away and got tons and tons done, not sure where it is, but I've been slaving away. I did finish the 4 beaded ornaments and got them mailed out, my daughter loves them (Phew!). I've finished the 3rd snake scarf and I'm done with the knitted gifts. I may (after Christmas) make some more, but we'll see. This one is for a 'grown-up' friend - sure hope she doesn't read my blog or I'm in trouble!!! - There is a bell at the end of the tail, but it's not too loud. This one is about 5 feet long and will wrap around the neck nicely.

I've also been playing around with the button bouquets. I have 'some' bright colored buttons, but most of these are just part of the stash I've had for years. I thought maybe some felt leaves would help, but now that I see them, I'm not sure. They just don't stand out as much as the real colorful buttons do, and looking at the leaves . . . hmmm, I'm just not sure. I think I need to change the leaves a bit. Personally, I think they look better in person, but I'm not the recipient.

Then last Saturday, the 23rd, Dale and Candy had baby goats! They are sooo cute! They were born about 2:30 am - doesn't it seem that all babies come in the middle of the night?? In these pictures they are about 9 hours old. The baby in the top picture is about 14-15 inches long as she (??) lays.

We are having breakfast here. This one is the same size as the first. Just twins, boy and girl. The poor Momma was HUGE; it's a good thing there were only 2. She was the most uncomfortable looking goat I've ever seen (like I've seen a lot - LOL). She was having trouble just moving around. She would lie down and groan, she would stand up and groan. Even while she laid down she was groaning and moaning. She was almost as wide as she was long! She has turned out to be a very good Momma. The kids are now up and running around, being goats.

I had a very wonderful Thanksgiving at Dale and Candy's with TONS and TONS of food! There were about 14 adults and 3 children. Lots of fun, laughter and eating. I got home about 8:30, waddled around the house for a couple of hours and went to bed! I had eaten sooo much, I just could not get comfortable to do anything.

Lots of thoughts on everything to be thankful for; good health, roof over our heads, loving family and friends. I guess it sums up to be ENOUGH. Enough food, enough good times, enough love and companionship - ENOUGH! Of course there are things we would like to be thankful for, like a new house, a new car, more money - but you know what? We have what we need and are thankful for it.

I leave you with thoughts of Peace that we will be thankful for in the near future, and that all our servicemen and women will join us at our table next Thanksgiving!


Saturday, November 22, 2008

now 32 days . . .

I got the beaded ornaments, of the last post, finished with a name tag and the year AND got them mailed off to my daughter in Texas. Now I hope they get there in one piece! They should; I wrapped them in tissue paper, inserted them in a sandwich bag with air in there, and surrounded them with newspaper. The box and paper weighed more than all 4 ornaments together. I test shook the box and nothing rattled - that's a great sign.

The weather is gloomy today. Light rain and just 30 degrees as we "speak". After I finish my breakfast, I will start the wood stove and get some warm ambiance going. Once the fire has created some nice coals, I won't have to watch it quite as closely, I can just toss a piece of wood in now and then. The temperature can go up quite fast and I always open a window or two or three! Not wide open, but cracked 1-2 inch (3-5 cm), if I don't, then after a while it becomes very hard to breathe in here! There is a heat reclaimer on the stove pipe that has a fan in it that really, really blows the heat around. I have had the back door open and it is still near 85 degrees in the house, just way too hot for comfort - that's why the windows are open, it keeps it comfy.

The cat is hanging on the screen and wants in, so I'll let you go for now with this little message.

The things that come to those who wait will be the things left by those who got there first!

Monday, November 17, 2008

37 days

Do I hit the panic button yet? I have been really, really busy getting my Christmas gifts done, but there still seem to be more on the to-do list than on the 'done' list!

This is what I've been, and still am, up to. The balls are almost 3 inches across and the beads are little, itty, bitty things! Can we say "hard to see"?

These are going to my daughter to give as gifts.

I have also been knitting - not quite as hard to see since the yarn is worsted weight. I knit in the evening when the light is just too hard to bead by. These two scarves are about 4 1/2 feet long and 5-6 inches wide. I'm making another one for a "grown-up". I think that will finish off the scarves for now, but I thoroughly enjoy the process. As you can see, there are button eyes, and wood bead tails. Lot of fun!
I'm not sure what project I'm moving on to next, but I will keep going until I run out of time. I've really had issues trying to upload these pictures, so no matter how disjointed they look, I'm publishing them as they are. I think I need to question Blogger on this . . .

Like the title says, 37 days . . . and they will pass very,very fast.

Hugs to everyone!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I have this total fixation with the Nome, Alaska city web cam. I have had it as a 'favorite' on my computer since the Iditarod last march. During the Iditarod the camera was pointed at the finish line. Now it is pointed at the Visitor Center and Norton Sound. I check the camera on, at least, a daily basis, sometimes more! Today the sea and sky almost blend together in a steely gray and the ground is covered with snow. I don't know what the average snow amount is for Nome Alaska, but after the Iditarod, there was a row of buildings on the left side of the current view that I had no clue existed! They were drifted over.. But drifts are not snowfall totals, and with Nome's location right on the edge of the sea, I don't suppose they get that much - but I know I will be watching. The pictures update every minute - check it out here.

Well, we put the camper (almost) to bed for the winter. We just need to cover her up. Such a lonely sight . . .

And this was right after 'separation' . . . .

It is just sooo sad to me that another camping season is over. In a way, I wish I could camp all year, but this camper is just not built for winter camping. We 'almost' tried it during deer season when we never got above 40 deg during the day and had temps in the low 20's at night! It's just too cold for these old bones!

It is raining today, on and off all day is the promise. I like the rain, we can always use a gentle rain, but I get restless too. It is not so easy to pop out for a breath of fresh air, take a short walk with the dog, or just mosey around the property 'looking' at the scenery. You have to bundle up -right now it's 37 deg- so you don't get chilled, or soaked! Sometimes you can find a spot under the trees where it really isn't raining, but you can get lucky and find a spot where every drip in the forest falls from too!

Since the furnace just kicked on, I will leave you to your musings and go clean out the wood stove. Uggh, not fun. Then I will take a trip outside to dump the ashes, come in and start a nice fire. After that trip outside, I will need a nice fire! I have a wood box on the front porch that gets filled when there (hopefully) is no rain or snow falling, then I bring it next to the stove as needed. I think that the wood gets moved and carried a half dozen times before it is burned . . . and then again as ashes after it has burned. Yup, wood warms you up many, many times.

Have a good, warm day.

Friday, November 7, 2008


It has come and gone all day, just like the cat . . .


The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

Carl Sandburg

tidbits . . .

Yesterday was a productive day.

I cleaned my bedroom! Not totally, but enough to make a difference, and no, I won't show you a picture . . . I stripped the bed and vacuumed the mattress. I have to close the door to keep the dog out while I vacuum anything - she will attack the nozzle. Not in fear or anger, but in FUN! You try vacuuming with a dog's mouth chasing the brush. I have an old canister vacuum with a cheap plastic hose, holes and all, and a worn brush. I don't need the dog eating more of it - besides, I keep hitting her in the mouth! I made her bleed the last time I vacuumed. It was finally nice to get the job done without having to constantly yell at the dog - and it does little good anyway!

I also took the curtains down, washed them and the inside of the windows. I have no idea what had gotten into me! I also started on my drawers. I got 2 done with sooo much left over that I stopped. I need to figure out what I'm going to do with the leftovers! Some of it will go to the thrift store, some will get thrown out and some will be re purposed. Not sure to what I'll make with these things, but it will come to me. In the mean time I will put them into a container and out to the shed.

When I get to the T-shirt shelf, I know some of them will become shopping bags! Cut off the sleeves, open the neck a bit more, sew up the bottom and I'm ready for the store! Not sure if I need to serge around the openings, but I guess I'll find out the first time I use one. I read about the idea on one of the blogs I follow (can't remember which, sorry!), and found the instructions on Martha Stewart's site. Love it! I have more t-shirts than I can wear in a year, so some of them will become bags.

I like to burn candles. I have a ton of those small tins with lids. I know they don't cost very much, but it irritates me that it will burn straight down the center and then I'm sitting with 1/2 to 2/3 of a tin full of candle wax. There has got to be something that can be done with that - without too much work involved. In the past I've scraped the rest of the wax out and kept the tin to use for 'stuff'. I have too much stuff to fit into one of those small tins. I guess I could put buttons in there by color..... I like to see the button colors through the jars that they are in - no buttons in tins. Then what? I also hate to put labels on the tins - they are so pretty just the way they are. Maybe on the bottom?

When I woke up this morning it was very foggy outside. The fog was twining itself around the tree trunks, moving ever so slowly, but within a few minutes it had drifted upwards and disappeared. It reminds me so much of the Redwoods along the Northern California coast. My trees are just Ponderosas with a few other pine and fir trees thrown in, but the fog was the visual that took me to the coast.

I am going to leave you with a picture of my cat Maggie. She was playing with a piece of dog food that disappeared under the stove, and when I brought the camera out, she came right over and wanted her picture taken!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

a little bit of snow

Well, it happened. SNOW. I wonder how much we will get during this coming winter . . . this is looking northwest out my kitchen window. There is suppose to be snow falling all day, but I hope only in small spurts!

Joey, my cat, has to go out no matter what the weather, but how long he stays out is always a good question. All I captured this morning as he charged out the door was little paw prints. He will sit somewhere and watch the snow fall as long as he is not directly being snowed upon.

There always seem to be a lot of photo ops as soon as the first snow falls. Do you know how many snow pictures I have? Close to a gazillion!!! I just can't help myself when the first snows start falling, the views are so beautiful. Then about January, I've had enough of the snow to not want to take any more pictures. After that, I usually end up in the picture since I won't take any more unless they are very unusual. Or, to record the deepest of the season.

This was taken February 2008. By this time we had no where to put the snow! We had a neighbor come over with his tractor, scoop up the white stuff and toss it over the fence into the empty part of our next door neighbors yard. The roof in this picture doesn't look that bad, but I've already been up there twice to clear it off. The berm on the right is about 4 feet tall and about 6 feet wide!

OK, enough of this, I'm getting anxiety attacks just thinking about the coming winter, and climbing on the roof to clear it!

At least I have plenty of wood for the stove.....

Here's a seasonal hint for you . . .

Foggy Windshield? - Hate foggy windshields? Buy a chalkboard eraser and keep it in the glove box of your car. When the windows fog, rub with the eraser! Works better than a cloth!

Monday, November 3, 2008

and so it goes . . .

Yesterday started out with a bang! Actually a phone call to say my dog had played Houdini and was now at Dale & Candy's house. I had let her out, per her request, and I guess I didn't hear her scratch at the door, so she decided to escape. Now, in the past when she's gotten out of the yard, she will sit on the front porch and wait, nope, not this time. I guess she thought she'd teach me a lesson. Up the hill she went - a full mile no less - and was waiting for Dale to come out. And happy as a lark, tail wagging, butt wagging - real happy.

I get up there and she is happy to see me! Imagine that! Usually she knows she's done something wrong, but nope, not yesterday. Happy, happy dog. A couple of cups of coffee later, we head down the hill accompanied by 2-18 packs of eggs. Now these eggs are pretty fresh right out of the chickens, and have all sorts of "stuff" attached - do I need to go there? Nope, thought not! I have a little over a dozen at home . . . and figure that all I can do is cook them up for easy snacks. There is no other way to get rid of that many eggs as fast.

As I was cleaning the new eggs, I ran across a little, itty, bitty egg. Not much larger than a quarter. Can you believe this? That is actually a quarter lying there, and the other egg is a duck egg about 5 times as big. When I was taking it out to clean it off, it slipped out of my fingers and cracked.

I decided to fry it up along with another, small to regular chicken egg, and enjoy it. Here is a picture of the egg in the pan with the 'normal' egg. It literally was bite size. It looks like all yolk, but there was only a tiny, itty, bitty one - about 12 o'clock. I was a bit skeptical about an egg that size tasting ok, but it was fine. What. there. was. of. it! The rest of the 2nd 18 pack had eggs in it that are about 2 inches long. I will cook them up this week too and make an egg salad for us to enjoy. It will probably take a dozen eggs for us each to have a sandwich!

We are so use to duck eggs, that to have this tiny little thing is a total novelty! I'm just in awe that one of Dale's chickens laid that tiny speck. There was another one, not as small, but very elongated . . .

Lets hope that by tomorrow night that we can visualize a moose head hanging in the Vice President's house!!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Time change

Ok, we changed the clocks back an hour - we are now back to standard time. I'm up a whole 'hour early' (by the clock) but the body says "yup, time to get up!" It is still as gloomy as it was yesterday at this time, but no matter, I feel that I've gotten out of bed an hour earlier. Some accomplishment! This is the time I try to get up every day - big deal.

We used the wood stove again last night; it was cold and rainy outside, and the gas furnace can and does cost lots of money when let run all day and night. With the new heat reclaimer it takes a lot less wood to get the heat going. The reclaimer has a thermocoupler in it that turns the fan on and off at certain degrees. WOW does it circulate the heat fast! Very nice, and we won't be using as much wood as we have in past years, even though we have enough stock piled. The way my house is layed out, the heat is blown both into the kitchen and down the hallway to my bedroom. The heat in the kitchen I can take, but I don't like to sleep in a warm room. I may have to try closing the bedroom door to see if I can keep it cool, but when it's time for bed - the door has to be open. I cannot sleep in a small room with the door closed! I need to hear what goes on in the rest of the house during the night. I also need to hear the animals.

I've been working on some beaded Christmas ornaments. This picture is hard to see as I did red beads on a red ball. It is not one of the gifts that will be given. It was improvised and is a bit 'wonky' , but it gives you an idea what I've been up to. It is also only 2 1/4" across; the ones I'm doing for gifts are almost 3". I need 7 ornaments by Christmas and only one is a small ball. I have spoiled a few people, and now they know (hope) they are getting a new beaded ornament. I enjoy making these and I've learned to count very, very well. Each loop on a row has to have the same amount of beads, but I've gotten to where I can carry on a bit of conversation even while counting.

These are not the only kind of gifts I'm giving this year, but since some are going out of state, I thought I'd better get started. The out of state gifts need to be done first. The ones closer to home can wait their turn. As long as I don't push it like I did 2 years ago! Yup, finishing up 1/2 hour before leaving the house! There will always be last minute gifts, but hopefully I'm more on top of it this year . . . I can always hope . . .

I will take pictures of everything I make, but I won't post them until after Christmas - I don't know how many people I know read my blog, so I'd hate to spoil the fun for them.

I will leave you with a clock change thought:

Since it's the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

time sure flies

I didn't realize that it's been a week since I last posted, but I guess with all the "I should post" thoughts and never doing it does make time fly.

I've been all over the internet looking for different things for my web site, my blog and my Etsy Shop. Did I find anything? Yeah I did, but not as much as I wanted to. Or maybe in some regards more than I needed, but not what I wanted!

I've been away from my site for a while - the builder was giving me fits and I just didn't want to deal with it for a while. Not good, I have to work on it to make it viable. This weekend I will be working on Christmas gifts so I can get some of those out of the way, but I will be back to the web site on Monday. If I have to grit my teeth and do it over, I will. Won't like it, but will do it!

It's hard to believe that tomorrow is Halloween. I do not like the commercialized version of Halloween, I belong to the old pagan beliefs that it is a time of remembrance of those who have gone before, and that on this night the veil is thinnest between here and there. I know, I know - I'm nuts. That's OK.

And the politics - Oh brother! I'm glad that the vote is close, I'm so sick and tired of the candidates picking apart each other instead of focusing on the issues. It has become 18 months of mud slinging. I remember when the candidates could not even mention any thing bad about the opponent! Somewhere in the 1960's, I think. Maybe the current candidates could explain HOW they are going to fix our economy instead of just making empty promises that they can't keep anyway. OK, I'm done.

We are waiting for a bunch of fronts to bring in 2-3 storms during the next 5 days or so. I've left my Jeep out of the carport so it can get 'washed' off a bit. It is suppose to be a greenish-blue/bluish-teal or something like that, but it has changed to a very muddy blue (I think!) I still need to clean the windows - it is harder to see out than into it. I have a dog with a very wet, nosy nose! She has to sniff everything at least 3-4 times to make sure it is OK to be there - including the windows.

I need to caulk the front threshold so the water won't get into the wood underneath, but the caulk gun didn't want to cooperate with me so I'm borrowing one from Dale. Hopefully it will get here before it's totally dark. I also need to get the camper off-loaded from the truck, but we need to fix the stands with new 2 x 6" boards so we can steady it better than in past years. That probably won't happen until next weekend if it is going to rain for a while. Then I need to find (I think I know where it is) the tarp that goes over the camper.

I think I'll quit posting now - I'm getting grumpy and gloomy . . . I'm just not feeling real well at the moment.

Happy Halloween to you all.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

is there someting in my water?

Things are stumbling along pretty much the same as the last post. I've tried working on my website today but there seems to be 'something' going on over at the builder. It is moving sooo slow that I almost forgot what I wanted to do to some of the pages. You hit the 'save' button for the page and I could literally go to the bathroom while it was saving! Talk about frustrated! I. gave. up.

I'm also trying to take pictures of my crafts for posting on my Etsy store (not open yet). This house is sooo dark that the only place I found that was light enough was, again, the bathroom! I have tried different rooms, different set ups, different lamps and lights - NOTHING worked. The bathroom works . . . go figure! At least after a week of taking bad pictures, I've finally figured it out, but the bathroom?

I have at least a half dozen items to post and I've had trouble getting my thoughts together to make anything else since I was having such a hard time getting pictures of them. Now I should be able to get going. My problem now (I know me) will be what to make next! There are tons of ideas rumbling around my head, and tons of supplies just waiting to be made into something - this will be interesting.

I've also been trying to clean up the front porch/entry so I can get to the wood box. It is a nice big box with a nice big flat lid on it, so it gets piled with stuff during the summer. Yeah, now where to put all the stuff. I've been going through it slowly to make sure that the things I want to keep aren't thrown out. Then there is the stuff I sort of want to keep, but really will never use - I hate throwing out things that can be used, but I need to just get rid of the stuff! Maybe I'll save the best stuff and give it to my girlfriend Candy! Just what she needs - my old cast off stuff! LOL I should probably get rid of a lot more than I am, but I NEEEEED that stuff . . . .

I have a box on the porch for Dale full of old broken metal stuff. He is into welding lawn ornaments. During the summer whenever we go yard/garage sale-ing we look for broken tools, rakes, shovels, etc. Dale makes these into animals, birds or whatever strikes his fancy. I have a bird that he made last year, and I just love it! Each item he makes is one-of-a-kind. This year he will be able to work a bit more since he put a wood stove in his shop, last year every thing had to be made before it got too cold!

Tomorrow will be a busy day - I have a lunch date with a friend, I need to return the stove pipe from the last post, and I have to go grocery shopping (I hate grocery shopping). By the time I get home I will be thoroughly exhausted, but I haven't been into town for over a week, so we need a lot of basics like milk and bread.

Since the bathroom has played a big role in my day, I will leave you with this:

Use empty toilet paper rolls to store appliance cords. It keeps them neat and you can write on the roll what appliance it belongs to.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

busy, busy, busy

Yesterday I went to town and picked up a reducer and some stove pipe for our wood stove. We had bought a new heat reclaimer since the fan in the old one died a couple of (3-4yrs.) ago. Now, a friend -Dale- and I have to get it installed.

Read the rest real slow and one sentence at a time! Otherwise you will think I'm nuts and not making any sense at all . . . but I really am. Picture two people almost dancing around a wood stove - not for fun, but frustration in not knowing where to place ourselves to get the best 'grip' on smooth stove pipe! Aarrgghh!!!!!!!!

Hmmm, well yes, we do! It was very easy to tear the old one out . . . but we had evidently forgotten that when we pulled the old one out, to see how to get the new one in, getting it back together was a royal pain! It is impossible to put stuff together that measures EXACTLY the same when one is suppose to go inside the other! The stove outlet is 6" o.d (outside diameter) the reducer is 6" o.d., hmmm - what is wrong with this picture you ask? the two don't want to slip nicely together..... Dale made a collar that would slip outside on the stove and outside on the reducer . . HEY it works! Then the reclaimer slips inside the reducer. OK that worked!

Now for the stove pipe itself . . . I wanted 2 - 4 foot pieces. The store doesn't carry that so I got 4 - 2 foot pieces. So far so good. AGAIN - the stove pipe measures 8" o.d. - the top of the reclaimer measures 8" o.d. and to further complicate matters, the chimney pipe is just shy of 8" i.d. (inside diameter) Doesn't work! We have to go back and use the old stove pipe that will slip inside the chimney. Fine! We had to turn one of the sections around so that the crimped end will go inside the reclaimer. Now the other end of that section won't fit into the section that goes up the chimney. Can you read FRUSTRATION? We MAKE it fit! In the mean time, I'm on a kitchen step stool holding a 30 pound reclaimer up above my shoulders - can we say arms hurt?

Then we have to move the stove in exact alignment underneath the reclaimer/stove pipe . . .wood stoves are not featherweight items! Dale is holding the reclaimer/stove pipe, is wife and I are moving the stove around to get it right. RIGHT ! ! ! It took some time, but we got it!

Finally we get it all together with some screws in the holes to keep the smoke from filling the house. Looks like some sort of spaceship, but I don't care! There is nothing that will make me take that thing apart EVER again! And when/if it ever needs to be replaced - I will let the pros do it! Saving money and loosing your sanity is not worth it. Take my word for it!

Besides, now I have to take the 4 - 2 foot sections back to the store . . . if they don't ask, I won't tell much about the frustration, just that the sections wouldn't work.

. . . and then there is today:

After we got home from our 8-day camping/hunting trip I was absolutely beat! I emptied the camper of food and clothes, but did not dump the poo poo tank. Lazy me. I did it today - I HATE that job, but some body has to do it. It needs to be dumped after every trip. Period. No two ways about it. I have looked at the camper for over a week now thinking about it every day. I did it today. Uugghh!!!!! We still need to blow out the water lines so there is no water to freeze. After that, it needs to air dry inside the tank, so the little hose bib size opening cover needs to be left loose . . . don't leave it off or you will have 'things' nesting in the opening . . . like mud daubers (bad news!) The lines will be blown out with an air compressor later today or tomorrow. Tomorrow I will go clean the mess I left inside the camper toilet room because I used the same gloves (very sooty gloves) I wore yesterday.

If I survive this weekend I might be able to craft next week. Oooooo, what I wouldn't give for a nice craft room . . . another story at a later date . . .

Thanks for letting me vent today, I really, really needed it!

The 50-50-90 rule:
Anytime you have a 50-50 chance of getting something right, there's a 90% probability you'll get it wrong!

Have a great weekend. (((hugs)))

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

relax? who me? I've got work to do . . .

I've been working hard at getting the website put together, but it seems the harder I work on it the more there is to do! I'm not complaining because I need this to work for me, but the more I do, the more I learn that I don't know much! Hmmm! I've always done my own kind of beading, but even I need to learn how to do it correctly.

I asked my daughter "Gee hon, don't you need some craft or beading supplies?" Sure, she said, but I can't figure out how to buy from your site. Well, let me tell you - if she can't figure out how to purchase from my site then I KNEW no one else could. That set my teeth on edge and I've been furiously trying to get it together ever since. I need to have her look at my site again . . . and to see if she can figure out how to buy something now that I've made some changes!

The site is all about Beading for Beginners. There is lots of information about starting beading, there will be TONS of information as time goes by! There are links to buy supplies, tools, beads, etc., etc. There will be recommendations, patterns and ideas for projects. I have a huge list of beading societies from across the country and world wide, but if you know of a group that would like to be represented, please email me and I will add the group to the list. Also, if you see, or know of an error that I've made, again, please let me know and it will be corrected.

I take a break once in a while to get a bite to eat, but most of the day is spent doing a bit of research on the various aspects of beading, writing about beading and fixing the links so my visitors can get more information and supplies. I have to watch myself so that I don't get ridiculous with the research - like a major overload of information! I've done it before and all I want to do is cry and whine about how much info there is out there, and that I will never know it all. Well, it is my goal to have a very informative web site with all the 'stuff' that is needed to know what you're doing, and to teach you how to grow and develop your beading.

I just re-read everything, changed some, and figured out that I want the world at my feet... Really tall order for a new website, huh? Just smile, nod and tell me I can do it and I will love you forever!

I think I'll take a break now and catch my breath, and leave you with a crafting thought:

Creative clutter is better than idle neatness.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Back home . . .

Oh it is sooo good to be home again! We got home early Friday afternoon and I've been trying to catch up on unloading the camper, putting the food away, laundry but general cleanup of the camper will have to wait a few days until it warms up.

We did end up setting up camp in a light drizzle, but got the canopy up real fast since we could see a storm coming our way! Boy am I glad we hustled - it was a long steady COLD rain. Yup, it lasted 3 days . . . There were times when it seemed like it was just a sheet of rain running off the canopy, but at least we had a dry space outside. I don't think the temperature during our trip got above 45 degrees. Then on Thursday we had some freezing rain, turned to a bit of hail and by nightfall it was snowing! We woke up on Friday to 2 inches of snow on the ground and 22 degrees at 8 am.

I always thought I'd like to do some winter camping, but this was enough for me. Also, the camper is not a 4 season camper! The heater is the forced air style and runs a battery down in 24-36 hours, so I had the stove top on with an 8" clay pot upside down on top of that and it kept it comfy - not warm, mind you, but comfy compared to outside. The heat was from the counter top up and I slept warmly since the bed is in the cabover section. It was a pain though to get into and out of my coat - it's not like there is room inside to swing things around, but you slowly slide into jackets and coats. . . slowly so not to catch anything on the counter or the table.

Don't get me wrong, I always love to camp, but this year was a bit cold. All the deer had left for lower altitudes, but we had a lot of fun.

The scenery was gorgeous! Tall pines and firs, small open meadows and sun spots on the ground that we all ran for when we spotted them. Even though the temperature was low, the sun felt warm on our hands and faces - the rest was covered up!

I'm also still trying to catch up with all my blog reading, checking & answering emails (489!) and posting, so if I haven't answered you yet, hang in there! I appreciate all comments and emails, so please don't despair, I will be there soon.

I leave you with this:
My "to do" list is so long, I will never die!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

and we're off . . .

We are off for deer camp tomorrow! I'm just about loaded (the camper, silly!) and ready to go! I'm very excited and a bit melancholy at the same time . . . deer camp is always fun, but it is the last outing of the year. We will be gone until October 10 or 11 and then it will be time to put up the camper for the winter . . .

It is not a very big camper, about 8 1/2 feet long, but it is stuffed full to the rafters! The weather is very changeable this time of year so I need to have clothing for layering, extra if we get wet, and of course several coats and shoes. Here in Southern Oregon we are suppose to have rain tomorrow - oh goodie, setting up camp in the rain is always fun! Hopefully it will wait until after we have gotten ourselves situated, but our luck is usually - do it in the rain! What ever we have to do we will do . . .

It's getting close to feeding time, so I'd better get going - it will be my last "real kitchen" cooked meal for a while - don't get me wrong, we eat real well at camp, it's just that it's not the same as the "home" kitchen.

See you on the 11th or 12th!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Animals ! ? ! ? !

I have 2 cats and a dog. The cats can't stand each other; the dog loves and chases them both. These cats, Maggie & Joey, are always attacking and spitting at each other, but last night I went into the bedroom, and there they both were - curled up on the bed! Not close, mind you, but both on the bed sound asleep. As soon as Joey would think of moving, Maggie will hiss & spit and dive under the bed or dresser. He does not care - he will leisurely jump off the bed right in front of her, sit and stare at her as she creeps deeper under her shelter. He really can be a sh*t!

The dog, SueAnn, is happy no matter which cat she is chasing. Not to harm, but to play. Well, cats chose the time to play, not the dog! SueAnn is getting a bit cold now that the weather is changing despite having a blanket on the floor. I have come around the corner into the living room, and there she is, pretty as you please UP ON THE COUCH! She is not allowed on the furniture, but must think that the rule doesn't apply when I'm not looking. She gives me those really, really sad puppy dog eyes and tries not to move - maybe I won't see her . . . yup, quite obvious when I want to sit - hmmm, what is that lump? She just slithers off the edge when I tell her to get down, and slinks into the bedroom where her nice furry bed is. Until I get up off the couch . . . she watches me . . . then she will slink back on the couch. There's just no reasoning with her! I guess cold is cold.

Joey is a prolific hunter but thank goodness he's given up bringing me his prize - I throw it out - now he just eats it. He's good at catching squirrels, voles and birds. He growls at me when I try to get it away...... he does have a bowl of food in the house (he and Maggie won't share), and the door is usually cracked what we call "kitty width". That way they can still come and go. That will stop soon, it is getting too darn cold to have the door open except for a few hours mid afternoon. Then he'll be able to chow down without my seeing him. Joey will then resort to his antics to get us to let him in - he jumps up on the screen in the living room window! And he will keep doing it until we let him in. Talk about "in your face"! The only time he doesn't do it is if the house is dark - then he goes to my bedroom window and plunks at my screen! At 2 in the morning - I have to let him in, he won't stop otherwise.

Maggie on the other hand is (suppose to be) a little lady. Except when she's hissing and spitting at Joey! She has a very soft meow, but she walks like a trucker! (sorry guys!) It feels like a tidal wave when she walks across the top of my pillow, uhh, excuse me - runs across my pillow. She also kneads like she's baking three years worth of bread! I have to knock her down to get her to quit, and that is no guarantee either.

Just took a look in the kitchen - Joey is eating the dog food. He has food in his dish, he just needed a snack of a different color I guess . . . Maggie won't eat the dog food, but she will snag a piece and chase it across the kitchen until it goes under the stove or fridge! I wonder if there is enough under the appliances to feed the dog for a while - there should be!

Maggie is also a lover of the milk cap rings . . . she will toss and chase them around the kitchen where they slide on the floor. They too disappear under the appliances . . . I wonder how many of those are under there . . . ? I know last time I cleaned under the fridge, I found 9 - and that was quite a while ago. I'd rather give her the cap rings than rubber bands, but they can hurt when stepped on!

Don't get me wrong, all the animals have toys, but I guess they aren't as fun since they were bought specifically for them - they'd rather have the weird stuff! Like kids - they like the box the toy came in better than the toy!

I'm going to leave you with warm fuzzy, animal feelings.

I'm trying to be the person my dog thinks I am.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Seasons are turning

Yesterday, as I took a short walk around the yard, I noticed that the breeze of earlier in the day had gotten stronger. I had noticed the small clusters of dead pine needles on the trees for days, but now they were flying through the air and as they got thicker on the lawn I noticed that I was now minus a "front lawn" but had a "front porcupine" instead. The needles looked like they were sprouting out of the ground in little brown clumps. Just a simple reminder that the summer is fast coming to a close.

There is still our annual deer camp to go to - hmmm, 10-12 days in the woods. The temperature will change a lot during that time - the days will be cooler and the nights will get to be downright cold!

After camp, it will be time to buckle down and get the holiday crafting and baking started. I keep looking at the calendar, but it is not growing longer, it's moving along at it's happy speed towards the days when we meet with family and friends and celebrate the things we are thankful for and gathering for the brightness that is Christmas.

I have a ton of things that I want to get done before it's too late - getting my website up and worth something (a gift to myself), gifts to be thought of and made, winterizing the house for the cold days, and a dozen other things.

I'm currently knitting a hat for myself just K2, P2 ribbing all the way. I already finished the fingerless gloves and a short scarf, all out of the same yarn. I never was a matchy-matchy type person, but I have sooo much of this yarn that I just kept going . . . what's next? socks? could be! I think that the worsted weight yarn might just be too thick if I want to wear my regular shoes with them. They might be nice with my slippers . . . hmmm, yes, that would work, or I could find some sock yarn. I've thought of making the kind that goes all the way over the knee since that's a part that always seems cold . . . could be useful.

I also need to bead some ornaments for some friends that I have spoiled in past years. I've put them on a "new ornament a year" type schedule, so I also need to get that done. Three of them at least, and maybe four - starting someone new on that. In a way it makes gifting easier since I know what I'm giving them, but finding a pattern or design is another story. In the past, I have just made up the design as I went, and I may continue to do that, but this year I need to WRITE DOWN the instructions in case I want to do it again.

Then there is the sewing I want to do so I can sell online (Etsy) . . . I hope this will come about SOON so I can make holiday things that I just love but just don't fit my house. I want to share with the world, only keep pictures for myself. Big plans, lets see if I can get it together.... maybe by posting about it here, I WILL get off my butt and do it. (ya think?) Procrastination should have been my middle name!

The sun is shining, it's 72 degrees, there is a slight breeze, and I'm going outside!

I leave you with this (mostly for myself!):

What you don't start today will never be finished tomorrow. Goethe

Friday, September 12, 2008

If Fall is not far off, winter is not far behind

As I took my walk this morning I heard the unmistakable sound of Canada Geese. I looked around in the sky and found them in a long 'V' flying over the river. As I watched, about 6-7 broke away and came in for a landing at a wide spot above the dam. The rest continued to circle around with a few breaking away with each turn . . . I love hearing the geese, but it does tell me that Fall is not far away no matter what the calendar says. It just seems so early this year.

I've also watched the deer, they seem to be eating everything in sight, not that they don't do that any way, but there seems to be an urgency to their munching. I'm hoping that the babies that visit will make it through the winter, they seem so fragile still.

The squirrels that do take a chance coming into our 'dog' yard are getting very fat and furry too. I'm thinking that we are going to have an early winter. I hope we get tons of snow instead of very low freezing temperatures. I'd rather shovel the roof than dig out every warm piece of clothing I own (I'll do that anyway!) and have to wear it all at once!

I love winter - there is just something really special about it. I love being outside (as long as I'm warm) and hearing the silence that abounds. There is a peace on the land when it's snowing, and nothing is moving - just the flakes gently falling. Now blizzard conditions has me hugging the wood stove, and having lots and lots of wood to feed the hungry beast! No, seriously - my stove will heat the house nicely, and this year we got a new blower fan to direct a bit of heat down the hallway to the bedrooms (and bathroom!) There are cold spots in the house, but you only need to hug the stove once in a while and things are fine.

I have some very nice clothes for going outside, and boots that are rated to -100 degrees. If my feet or hands are cold, I'm miserable, but these boots are a dream! Toasty toes, happy me!

It's going up to the mid 80's today, so I'm a bit premature in my 'winter wonderings', but cold weather will be here before you know it. Of course, winter means different things in different parts of the country, but it's still winter and probably cold for the folks who have 50's for winter . . .LOL.

We have one more camping trip of the season - deer camp. The first two weeks of October are designated for rifle hunting, and I will be out there in the woods somewhere. With lots of warm clothes, fixings for warm food, and possibly a warm fire. What more can you ask? Snow and not rain. Snow is easier to deal with than mud, and it does get muddy when you are on dirt roads!

Hmmm, back to reality - there are still some warm days between now and camp, so I better get to enjoying since they'll be gone before I know it.

I leave you with thoughts of sunny skies, prayers for upcoming storm victims, and happy thoughts for the weekend.

"Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak."

Thursday, September 11, 2008

week of remembering

This time of year makes me stop and remember lots from past years.

The Twin Towers come to mind first - I was moving to Oregon from Nebraska, had gone to pick up my moving van and watched the 2nd plane hit on the TV at the van place. I remember being speechless, stunned and utterly frozen in place watching this horrific event take place. It seemed like the whole world was moving in slow motion as I made my way home . . . to load my truck . . . and leave on the 12th.

It left me with the same feeling of disbelief as when I heard that President Kennedy had been shot. Lost and in shock. The world was never the same again then either . . .

The smaller remembered moments seem trivial compared to either of the above events, but are still a part of my progression in life. On 9-9-1999, I put a bid on the house I'm currently living in - BIG step in getting to where I wanted to be - OREGON!!! The following day we, my Mom, Donavan and I left on a whirlwind trip to Colorado to see D's family. My Mom was visiting from Denmark and was amazed at the speed in which we traveled the 600 miles in one day. We did the touristy thing, saw Garden of the Gods, took the tram up Pikes Peak, and went shopping. ALL in 3 days!

My drive across the country in 2001 was done in silence as I could not listen to the radio broadcasts telling the story over and over and over . . . and over some more. I knew that by my tuning it out it hadn't gone away, but I didn't need to hear it on my 3 day journey across the western part of the country. I was driving one of the largest rental trucks available, pulling a car dolly and had my house on my back like a snail. It was an un-eventful journey, but long and tiring. Not only did I have my house 'on my back' I had 3 cats with me. I'm not sure I could do the trip now, but I was determined to be in Oregon one way or the other.

Daily life since then has been pretty peaceful, with small ups and downs, but nothing major. I think that I was meant to be here. I'm home, and AT home. I'm following one blog, gipsy life, and can definitely relate to Kerstin and the need to be in a specific place.

As I reflect on the above, I'm grateful to be happy, healthy and at home in my skin.

Just so that this post doesn't leave everyone with a 'down' feeling, I'm leaving you with this:

Some people try to turn back their odometers. Not me! I want people to know "why" I look this way. I've traveled a long way and some of the roads weren't paved.

Friday, September 5, 2008

. . . ok, alrighty . . .

Talk about going into a panic over worry of did I and where is the registration & tags for my truck . . . I've been worrying about this for a week and I haven't been able to find any paperwork for the truck. Hmmm, even if I did not put the tags on the truck plates, I would have thrown them in the truck . . . I do that with the insurance card, and it was there.

Called the OR DMV to double check that the registration was paid . . . the lady told me that I was paid up to November 30, 2008, and that the notice had not been sent yet. As soon as she said it I knew I was going NUTS. I kept thinking that it had been due last year, 2007! and that I had lost my registration & tags. I tore this house apart looking for the notice to PAY . . . looking for the tags, looking for anything that would keep me legal. I have been driving the rig around with my camper on it, but thankfully (even if I'm legal) off road most of the time! I have 3 different registrations to keep track of and they all come due at different times. As soon as I pay and receive the tags, I DO take them out and put them on the rig. Loosing it . . . BIG TIME!!

Phew, not a good day - it hasn't been a good week, or month for that matter. There is so much left to do on my website to start making some money, and there is so little money left in the bank account to keep going, that I'm really hitting panic mode. I know what I need to do, but I hit a brick wall when I start trying to do it. Not a good thing. I am getting traffic, and clicks, but it seems to fizzle from there. (I need my daughter to keep after me for a bit until I can get on a roll in fixing the whole thing.....) I need someone to be interested in what I'm doing (see my whiney post) to make it real. Right now it's still a strange world out there, but with no one that I know that is really familiar with making a living online, it will remain so.

OK, enough of that - - it is a really beautiful day here in Southern Oregon, low 70's, clear sky, no wind just a breeze, and the deer so at home that I literally have to squirt them with water to get them to leave the yard. There is a momma deer with 2 babies that likes to eat the clover patches in our yard, the only problem is that the patch is 12-15 feet from our front door and she is very protective of her babies - she will stomp her feet to warn us to keep away . . . "HEY - this is MY yard and you need to keep your distance!" is what I tell her every time she is there, but she stands her ground and stomps her feet. Water hose, here I come.

Three and a half weeks, starting October 1st, I will be gone for 12 days, at least, for deer hunting. The deer we hunt are not the mothers and babies, but the bucks. We did not get our usual tags this year for hunting close to home, but for ones that will take us 25 miles from the house, not that it's far, but we usually only have to go about 8-12 miles. Maybe this is a sign that we will do better ? ? ? I love venison steaks, venison anything! I guess I have a switch in my brain that works for seeing nice little "bambis" during the rest of the year, and FOOD during the first part of October. You have to have had venison to understand . . . yum, yum.

We have two direct neighbors that have dogs, and when we are outside in either the front or the back yards, all these dogs do is BARK. Now, I have a dog too, but she just doesn't bark at every move the neighbors make. These dogs seem starved for someone to play with them..... wish I could, but it really does get annoying. Am I just an old B*tch? Hmmm . . .

You know, I was just looking at the picture above - not bad at all. Too bad my camera (or me) doesn't take really good close ups of my crafts. I also have a dark house with mobile home panelling in it - nothing in here is light and airy. I think maybe I need to make a light box where I can put things that need to show sparkle and shine . . . would an old cardboard box work, or do I need to have something better? I'll have to look around. I will also need lights coming from at least 2 sides to be able to photograph without BIG shadows . . . something to get thinking about.

I have a 50th wedding anniversary party to go to tomorrow! WOW 50 years! I'm really, really impressed. Knowing the couple is a great priviledge, and if I was married, they would be an inspiration. Four children, 3 of whom I know, is a great task. Their faith, I'm sure, had a lot to do with them coping. One of the kids I know very well, one of my best friends, and he is NO ANGEL! I'm know he's was a trial growing up, and he does march to his own drummer even now, much to the chagrin of his family. But he is an honest man, says what he means and means what he says. He is of the old fashioned world - his handshake is good and the deal made is final - no problems, he does not forget and will not do you wrong. The two other kids that I know are good people, will honor their parents on this special day, and are folks that I'm glad to have in my life. The fourth child does not live close by so I have no real knowledge of him.

It's Friday, I'm going to enjoy the weekend and knucle and buckle down come Monday to solve my $$$ problem. May be a tough one, but it will be solved.

I leave you with a bit of wisdom that I need to take seriously myself . . .

"Obstacles are the things we see when we take our eyes off our goals!"

Happy sunshine to you all.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Fall is in the air

It's hard to believe that it's September 1st already. We have had several frost warnings but they are now changing to freeze warnings. I'm just not ready - and the temps are due to go up again.

Last night I forgot to cover my zucchini plant and some of the leaves were frost bitten this morning. I cut off the one zucchini that had been allowed to grow to eatable size, about 8-9 inches, and am saving it for fried zucchini with onions and mushrooms - yum, yum. The rest that started growing either withered and died, or were eaten by rodents.... not sure what, but there were little teeth marks on one that was about 3 inches long. I think I've gotten what I'm going to get from the plant. This year was just an experiment - next year I'd like to get a raised bed put together and have some tomatoes & pepper too. I also have some cantaloupe seeds saved and would like to try them too.

I got out my knitting needles and some light blue heather yarn to knit some fingerless gloves. I usually do dishes to warm up my hands & fingers, but there are times that they stay sooo cold that I run out of dishes. I have neighbors and friends telling me that they will be happy to let me do their dishes, but I'm not quite that desperate. I finished one last night and am working on the other one (after I get off the computer!) - I should finish it tonight before bed. I hate having cold hands and I'm hoping that gloves will help. I can already see where I'll knit more; these just cover a bit of the wrist, which is nice, but I'd like them a little longer up the arm - I'll wait until I finish some Christmas presents since these will work.

I told you about the package to my Mom for her birthday - she loved everything she got! She told me that until she asks for more stuff - DON'T send anymore! She says she has plenty for now. I had sent her 3 pairs of decorative edging scissors and a small heart shaped punch - she was sooo funny when she realized that she could decorate lots of her card stuff with those..... just amazed at the possibilities. It is fun sharing crafting ideas with my Mom; she's 81, but very young in some things. It is wonderful.

This weekend just past, we put in enough wood to last through the winter with what was leftover from last year. That's a great feeling - now I'll be warm twice from the wood...... I didn't split or stack, but I will be bringing it in daily to the wood box and those trips warm me up, then again when it burns. My room mate can run me out of the house sometimes with all the wood he puts into the stove - I've looked at the inside thermometer and he has it up to 90 degrees! WOW - time to open some windows so I can breathe! I left both Southern California and Nebraska because of the hot, hot, hot summers - I surely don't need HOT winters here.

I need to get my 'stuff' together and start all my Christmas gifts. I really need to figure out what I'm giving to who. There are 3 lady friends who always get beaded Christmas balls, so that's a given, but there are more folks than those three. I guess a list with names and gifts listed by year so I don't duplicate.

I need to go get into my warm fuzzies, curl up on the couch and finish my other glove so I can wear them in the morning when it will be sooo cold.

Wishing you warm (not hot) sunshine days.

"Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance."

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

One step at a time

It was a busy last week, as I said, I talked to my daughter; aired some feelings (I have more to go) and took some time to myself.

My daughter has been looking, really "looking" at my website and has come up with some suggestions for me. I am a novice, she is a part-time student of web site design to quote her, and she will try to help keep me on track. She and her husband have their own computer business, so I know she wouldn't make a mess out of my site, and if I don't like something she suggests, I can try it, frown and revert to the old stuff - the final choice is after all mine. But she is a good daughter, LOL.

I read some more of More to Me, a blog of a wonderful woman named Megg coming to terms with her feelings about lots of things we all face at one time or another. This site makes you realize that you can want things for yourself, you can do it, and one step at a time, you will get it if you believe in yourself. Check her out.

I took 3 days to myself and went camping. Well, it started out that a group of us were going, but they fell by the way side one by one. I had all my ducks in a row, fully loaded and I headed out by myself with my dog. We had some wonderful walks along the trails that surround the lake and the campground. We did a couple of power walks to make sure my dog still knows that I'm Alpha female, and lots of stop and sniff walks. The power walks have a pretty tight reign on the leash and the dog walks close to you without pulling every which way. The stop and sniff walks are just that - and we stopped, and we stopped, and we stopped - only the dog sniffed though. About half way through most of our walks, the dog came over and just walked next to me - I think she went into "sniffer overload". We then just found a rock or log to sit on for a while, or went back to camp to relax. I finished a book (could have been better), I worked on my Knobby Knitter, you know those spool things with the nails that make the long knitted strings..... if I had a better camera, I would post a picture...

I'm not sure what I'm going to make with this long knitted string, but by the time I run out of yarn, I may come up with something even if it's only a hot pad - not my colors, but it would work, LOL.

It was my Mom's birthday, 81, this past Saturday and I didn't get to call her until yesterday, but she 'figured' I was camping since I didn't call her. She always sounds so surprised and happy when I call that she makes me feel like a cherished daughter. It is some good feeling. We talked about the package that I sent, and she hasn't gotten yet, with all the card making goodies in it. I sent card stock, 3 pairs of fancy edge scissors, and blank cards with envelopes, stickers, and a few other things. She is really looking forward to going through the box!

I got an email from my daughter yesterday morning and she had sent a bouquet of flowers to her Grandma, along with card making supplies: pre-made cards & envelopes, plain paper, & lots of stickers . . . now I tell you, do great minds think alike?

My daughter also left me with a little thought, and I will share it with you:

"And take down one giant at a time."

Wishing you sunshine...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

. . . aftermath

After my post of yesterday, my daughter called to make sure that I was OK. I enjoyed our talk very much, and just went a bit further telling her my feelings, and that it wouldn't take long for me to get back to normal (hmmm, scary thought!)

I feel very much better for having written what I did, and that I can now go forward and take care of some things in my life. I am working hard on facing my demons - procrastination, fear of success and getting over my need of approval from others. I must say that my changing outlook on things are due to a blog I ran across very late last night - it's called More to Me. I started reading and could not believe that there is another out there that have the same feelings and fears as I do. I just knew that I had to read the whole blog from beginning to end. I'm still way back in the archives, but will read some of Megg's blog every day until done.

I feel inspired by Megg and am in awe of her ability to verbalize exactly how I feel.

I want to leave you with another inspirational quote:

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -- Dr. Seuss