Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Tablecloth 1

Here is one of the tablecloths. I decided to go with my Homer Laughlin teacups and desert plates. (I just love this pattern by Homer Laughlin, Georgian Eggshell.) The vase in the middle I thought was so pretty with the old-time look. It is made by Burton & Burton. Went with Brown Betty for tea and the napkins I got in the brown bag also.

Now, I realize there is no silverware on the table. Hum. This is a hard one for me. The stainless I have matches, it is serviceable, but not for show. So I just won't show it. (Just pretend it's there and is like slightly tarnished mostly gold.) Works for me!

Trying to simplify

So, there I was at The Salvation Army Thrift Store...

Being good, minding my own business...

Up to the register I went with a couple of tablecloths, a couple of sets of napkins...

Adding it up in my head, could I get away with a 10 spot or would I have to pull out one of the big bills, $3.50 + $3.50, a couple more bucks,

My turn came up, I am at the register and the clerk tells me, "you know today is fill a bag day, you fill a bag it is $5.00." I say, hum, okay, I can either pay like $12.00 for the stuff I have or go back and fill this brown paper bag up and pay $5.00. WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DONE???? Sure 'nough, I went back.

Do you know how much stuff actually fits into a brown paper grocery bag? A lot. Approximately 8, could have been 9 tablecloths later, and about 30 to 40 cloth napkins I left the store. That was 1 paper bag, 3 loads of laundry. I am trying so hard NOT to collect stuff. I went over to my daughter's house and we tried the tablecloths on her table. The ones that fit my daughter's table she kept and I went home with the rest. Oh well. Good thing I have that big garage.

Hee, hee, my table is gonna looks so pretty, my table is gonna look so pretty!!!! (I'll take pictures)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

We love how the snow has settled on the table outside, looks like a cake don't you think? A few huge candles to go on top would be fun. That's a lot of snow!

We went on a little tour about town today to check out some of the local church buildings.

They have some very pretty ones here. I did not take pictures of all of them.

Stopped to look at the river. It's been so cold here there is a layer of ice on it. Looks as though people have been on it. I'm not that trusting, but it's been very cold. One day it was -22.

Stopped by McDonalds to feed some hungry folks that went on my little tour about town with me. Look at that smile on Steve! Anabelle's winking. She thinks she may well be on Santa's naughty list! Ha

Made Steve hold these shoes like they were his, ha, what a good sport!

This was my favorite church building on the tour. Although it looks closed up, it looks very much like a picture my first husband painted in watercolor and gave to my grandma before he passed on. It hangs in her little apartment today.

Wanted to wish my new blogging friends peace, joy, and much love this Christmas and throughout the coming year!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Last year, at this time....

Okay, just a couple pictures from last year. Here we have granddaughter Anabelle floating parachuting guys over the stairs and making everyone catch them.

Let me introduce you to my kids there in the hall. Chad, married, (number 4 child) has his back to us, he's working on his doctorates in medical physics at MD Anderson in Houston, TX. Steve you met before, a virtual snow shoveling machine and gonna be accountant (20, single, overall good guy, single). Mom, Heidi, married (the nurse practitioner) is in her hello kitty britches by the rail, and hiding out in the back is number 3 in line Kammi, married, living in Germany with her husband who is in the Air Force. She just got her master's degree in education and right now is in Ghana on a mission trip.

I like this picture a lot. Chad (the physicist) trying to get the gingerbread house to work right. Pictured there at the table is my very sweet daughter-in-law Kristy. My oldest, and of course favorite child, is not pictured but can be found at http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=292559127. He has his master's degree from Yale in opera performance and has a particularly beautiful rendition of Peace in the Valley on his website. Chad and Kristy have just had a little baby boy, the first grandson, and Danny and Kathryn have two beautiful little girls. That's the family. I had a lot of fun raising those 5.

I have a lot of fun now too now that they are grown and on their own, hahahahah!!!!

Snowmen and Robert Louis Stevenson

These are my latest finds. These pieces are really fun. There were 4 plates, 4 salad plates, 4 bowls, and 4 mugs for $9.99, I think that's a good price for this set. It's going to be so cute. The big plates are just a bit different than the little ones, so adds some variety. Could not get both in the pictures. A couple of records in the background. Love my LPs, but that's another post!

The really BIG, BIG news is that we are under a BLIZZARD WARNING!!!! They are expecting it to be... -20 degrees there. YES, that's twenty below 0. We are pretty well stocked. We have extra fuses (yes, I said fuses) and food, although not sure if there is enough chocolate. I mean, is there ever enough chocolate?

I leave you with a poem by Robert Louis Stevenson.

The Celestial Surgeon

If I have faltered more or less

In my great task of happiness;

If I have moved among my race

And shown no shining morning face;

If beams from happy human eyes

Have moved me not; if morning skies,

Books, and my food, and summer rain

Knocked on my sullen heart in vain: -

Lord, thy most pointed pleasure take

And stab my spirit broad awake.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Sit with me in front of the fireplace

Here is my fireplace this year. How fun is this. My aunt had given me the little elf about 20 years go and I found the little fireplace by accident on a quest for something else a couple of days ago. A little tea candle fits right inside. Unlike your "full size" fireplace, this one is easy to clean. When I saw it, it made me smile and I wanted to share that with you!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Well here was our Thanksgiving tablescape. We had a lot of fun with this. Anabelle and I made the placemats. We used Homer Laughlin restaurant-style china. We also chose retro glasses and our napkin fold was diamond in a square. Everything had to be short and compact to be able to see each other and still put food on the table. We had a great time with this project.

We also made the Thanksgiving turkeys CeeKay shared with us at Thinkin' of Home. Thanks CeeKay!

I so enjoyed seeing everyone's Thanksgiving and fall pictures and look forward to sharing the Christmas season with you all over the miles.

Time for a poem!

The Winds of Fate

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

One ship drives east and another drives west

With the selfsame winds that blow,

'Tis the set of the sails

And not the gales

Which tells us the way to go.

Like the winds of the sea are the ways of fate,

As we voyage along through life:

'Tis the set of a soul

That decides its goal,

And not the calm or the strife.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Thanksgiving tablescape

Minot has some wonderful second-hand shops. Clean, bright, open. The people work at displaying the objects well and the prices are reasonable.

In keeping with my scaled-down house, I went scaled-down shopping for mini things for our thanksgiving day mini tablescape. My granddaughter and I have been working on the table decorations for this year together and I was looking for finishing touches. Keeping everything in mind I was looking for small touches for a small table that will move easily. I was able to find some cute things that will work very well.

And then I spotted these

A teapot, 2 mugs, salt and pepper shakers by Ganz,
(the tea tastes great out of it)

and these,

and I started to dream about Christmas vacation and cookies and hot chocolate and chatting with my Anabelle about oh so important 5-year-old things.

Yep, they all came home with me. We may have a mini house but we have a hugh garage!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Philippians 4:9-13 (King James Version)

Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you. But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.

Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

I love this passage. Isn't it a great thing to aim for, this kind of trust. No matter what state I am in Christ will strengthen me.

I have to admit though I am one of the rich of this world, never been hungry, never been without shelter, never have know real need. So...I guess this applies to me,

1 Timothy 6:17-19 (King James Version)

Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;

That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate;

Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

Thank God for all he's given me!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Space challenged

Our 1909 house in Guthrie, Oklahoma

4 bedrooms upstairs, my office, big kitchen, basement with washer and dryer, clawfoot tub in bathroom upstairs, double car garage.

Isn't amazing how we don't tend to feel we have so much stuff until we downscale a bit! We (son and I) have moved into this little rental that has great possibilities of cuteness for say a couple just starting out, a single mom with a little one, etc. I just plain have too much stuff! (Husband is in Oklahoma selling the house while I help with granddaughter, while daughter gets established in career.) Now the thing is, during this transition the challenge is that I live off what I make, ha, and in a very small space, with 2/3 of the stuff we have and make this happen in a happy way, of course. We don't plan to stay in Minot all that long and are not sure where we'll be off to next, so the last thing I want to do is acquire more big stuff (like a washer and dryer, furniture that fits the house, etc). So we are making adjustments.
Here is my new laundry center and set up.

The little egg is the Wonder Wash. You put hot water in it and crank it for a couple of minutes and your clothes actually do get clean! Then into the sink for a last rinse. Then on the right you have an extractor. This is a great machine, it's actually electric and your clothes are damp, some near dry when you get them out and we hang dry in the bathroom where we have a couple of folding laundry stands where the washer and dryer should go. Believe it or not this is not that bad. We were actually happy to have it when we were iced in during the blizzard. We still take the big stuff either to the laudromat or to my daughter's, or if we get behind. I think it's kinda fun. My son, yes, he thinks it is "lame" hahaha!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thank you so much Melody, very sweet award!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Second tea cozy

I really like the colors on this cozy. I had to look up cozy to see the spelling. Webster says cozy is, "a padded covering especially for a teapot to keep the contents hot," so I'll go with that. Really want to spell it cozie for some odd reason. So, it is all one piece, slips over the top, over the handle, over the spout.

I am having fun journaling my tea experience. I am trying my new teas and then journaling my experience with it, what it smells like, the color, taste with and without sugar, etc. I tend to be forgetful about the details sometimes and think this should help. Doesn't take very long and ... it's all mine. My experience, my journal, my reference, my thoughts.

So, someday if we ever meet and you say, for instance, "so, what is your impression of Taylors of Harrogate Spiced Christmas Tea," I can reply, "well, I think it smells soothing, homey, wonderful. Has a rich, dark color. Good plain without sugar, great with sugar, would like to try this as an iced tea. What is your impression?" Ha, and go from there!

Okay, now it's cold

I like this picture with the berries.

Well, we have had a couple of exciting weather days. We started with some rain and ended with some heavy wet snow. Most all of the roads were closed going out of town, airport shut down. Pretty exciting.

Nice to have one of these (Steve, 20-year-old healthy son, single, accounting major, strong christian, great personality, good listener, great sense of humor, wonderful uncle) when the weather is like this!

We are having fun though. The little rental we are in is by the hospital my daughter works at so they (daughter and granddaughter) have been able to stay with us for a couple of days. Today the high was 28 and low is going to be 16. Sunday it's supposed to get down to 7 degrees. You might say it's a bit crisp out!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

A few pictures of Minot, ND. Very windy today, most of the leaves have fallen. Has the feeling winter is really just around the corner.

It's Fine Today
by Douglas Malloch
Sure, this world is full of trouble-
I ain't said it ain't.
Lord, I've had enough and double
Reason for complaint;
Rain and storm have come to fret me,
Skies are often gray;
Thorns and brambles have beset me
On the road-but say,
Ain't it fine today?
What's the use of always weepin',
Making trouble last?
What's the use of always keeping'
Thinkin' of the past?
Each must have his tribulation-
Water with his wine;
Life, it ain't no celebration,
Trouble?-I've had mine-
But today is fine!
It's today that I am livin',
Not a month ago.
Havin'; losin'; takin'; givin';
As time wills it so.
Yesterday a cloud of sorrow
Fell across the way;
It may rain again tomorrow,
It may rain-but say,
Ain't it fine today?

Hoping for you a "fine" day today!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

First Tea Cozie

I learned how to make a granny square from a friend in high school and after that I made various little afgans. Everytime I would present my treasure to my mom and she would say, oh that's nice, you should take lessons. Then she would launch into about how wonderful my great-aunt Helen did and won blue ribbons at the fair. In all fairness there would always be some fairly shining error in my work. I like to work fast and wasn't into following the instructions too carefully. Well, I heard that statement one too many times, so I buckled down and set out to show I could do it. I have to say I will never crochet as well as my great-aunt Helen, I don't want to spend the time and effort, but I did win my first county blue ribbon in 1995 and a Virginia State Fair blue ribbon in 1996. Then we moved to Texas and on to other things. I decided yesterday to attempt a tea cozie, a nice quick project, and useful. So that's my story and here are some pictures.

Two fisherman afgans and the shawl in the middle.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Evening in Paris

Some years ago, I had a blue period. Literally, a cobalt blue period. My children were clearing out and moving on with their lives and I decided to surround myself with this lovely color. At the same time my mother was trying to clear out some of her things, scale down some. She asked if there was anything I could think of that I wanted. Well, there was this perfume she had, had as long as I could remember, Evening in Paris (in a cobalt blue bottle) and I asked for it. My mama shared that this was a very special perfume when she was in high school, and after. If a guy really liked you this is what he would give you. She used it very sparingly and the bottle is still pretty much full.

My mom passed on 6 years ago and you know I never thought to ask her if it was from my dad, ha. I don't think she had opened it for years. I had never opened it. My 20 year old son (the baby of 5, still at home, in college for accounting), right before I took this picture said oh, what's this, opened it up and smelled it. I'm glad he did because that meant I got to and you know what, it still smells good!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Why not Minot...

My reason to be in Minot

Pictures from the beautiful Scandinavian Heritage Park in Minot

Tea time!!!

"Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the priced of chains and slavery? Forbid it Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me ... Give me Liberty or give me Death."

-- Patrick Henry