Saturday, February 23, 2008


Whatever my fascination with the moon has been lately, I have finally achieved a photo where the moon appears sorta round. Something about the way the clouds were flitting across the moon's face last night made me want to try capturing it again. Although not quite successful, I am doing better. This semi-success was achieved on the auto setting with the ISO on automatic as well while the camera rested on the window sash and my left hand steadied the camera and my right pointer finger pushed the button...just in case you're all wondering. :>

After I had bragged at several blogs that the snow was slipping off to sea south of my corner of the world, it snowed five inches. It snowed the most amazing Ivory soap flakes sort of snow, which normally would've been easy to deal with, but because the snowbanks are so high, there's no place left to plow nor to shovel. I had to scoop it all into a pile and then use the snowblower to blow it up and over the snowbank. Bother! But it could've been worse...heavy wet snow would've been terrible.

Off to do my Saturday chores...

Friday, February 22, 2008

Snow Moon, Feather Your Nest, and a Mwah

It happened again with the moon last night — reflecting its pale light so intensely in my room that I awoke. I tried again to photograph it and, as with most things that I attempt at 4:20 am, it didn't work out. ;>

I did read a lot about taking moon shots and what I read frightened me. Some of the articles are soooo technical. Ackkkk! Several articles say that one must have a tripod AND a remote click because even the pushing of the button will cause such a vibration that the photo will be distorted. Sigh. I don't need a moon shot fit for National Geographic; I just want to capture the moon as it shines through the birches on the knoll behind my house. Why does it have to be so complicated?

So, for any of you who might be interested, I did find *this article*, which is less complicated and suggests a way to overcome the lack of a tripod.


Yesterday afternoon, my grandmother decided to play the piano for a bit and I pulled out some of her sheet music collection. When I saw the one above, I'll bet you can guess which two bloggers I thought of. I've since checked online and I can't find any vintage sheet music that exactly matches this cover with Anna Chandler the featured young lovely on the lower right corner.

The name, written in an old-fashioned hand, is "Cornelia Adair." Isn't that a terrific name? I am imagining a heroine of some romantic novel... She was actually the young woman who at 25 found herself orphaned and sold her parents' home to my grandparents. Cornelia left her piano and a large selection of sheet music behind for which my grandmother has always been grateful.


Sandi of Holding Patterns has given me this Mwah...right back atcha, too, Sandi! I've visited around looking for the rules. Not sure exactly what they are, once again, but something about presenting it to ten, which as you know means that I plan to divide that by two and subtract three or whatever my formula has been.

So I am passing this award along to two gals whom I adore and who could use a Mwah:

Vickie @ Sand Flat Farm

Happy Friday!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Moon, Banana Bread, and Poetry ;>

Did the moon wake you last night?

The moon woke me. The bedroom was bathed in cool light, which means that I need some blinds. I even took a picture. Since the taking of the picture floated back to me through fog so thick that I would be doing well to remember my name this morning, I was surprised to find that the moon is actually in the shot. Bad shot. In fact, there are two points of must be the flash reflecting from the glass, and the other a nondescript, tiny orb way up high. I should read up on taking photos of the moon. I didn't even attempt to take a photo of the eclipse; although, I did see it and marveled at its beauty.

Late yesterday afternoon I baked a Banana Yogurt Bread and, just like clockwork, I had a call from a friend who asked if the coffee pot was on. We enjoyed a pleasant time visiting, but the bread seemed to take forever to bake. I've adjusted the recipe accordingly.


* ¾ cup Canola oil

* 1½ cups sugar

* 2 eggs

* 1 TBS vanilla

* 1 cup plain yogurt

* 2 or 3 ripe bananas mashed

* ½ tsp salt

* 2 cups King Arthur flour (unbleached, unbromated)

* ½ tsp baking soda (NOT baking powder as you see in the pic)


Mix the first 5 ingredients until smooth adding the mashed bananas last and stirring in.

Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt and stir well before adding to the first mixture. Stir until just blended. Do NOT overmix.

Place in a large loaf pan filling two-thirds full and bake @ 350° for an hour or until a cake tester comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before turning out to cooling rack.

Printable Recipe

It's so cold today after much milder temperatures earlier in the week. A friend emailed me this little poem a few days ago. I attempted to track it down; apparently, it's a forward and any state/province can be plugged in. Let's see, shall we?

Michigan (New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Montana, Manitoba,) Poem

It's winter here in Michigan (New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Montana, Manitoba)
And the gentle breezes blow
Seventy miles an hour
At twenty-five below!

Oh, how I love dear Michigan (New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Montana, Manitoba)
When the snow's up to your butt
You take a breath of winter
And your nose gets frozen shut.

Yes, the weather here is wonderful
So I guess I'll hang around
I could never leave my Michigan
(New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Montana, Manitoba)
'Cause I'm frozen to the ground!!

Have a wonderful Thursday and don't forget, LOST fans, tonight's our night!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My Guilty Pleasures

Are we living balanced and beautiful lives? Melissa@The Inspired Room has raised this thought-provoking question right here on February 19th's post. It hearkens back to former discussions about what makes a beautiful home. Melissa believes that a beautiful life comes before a beautiful home and that that beautiful life is then reflected in the home. I'm not going to attempt to speak for Melissa because she speaks to this issue far more eloquently than I ever could, but just because the discussion is valuable and timely, I hope that you will read it for yourselves and join in the conversation.

Gosh, and I thought this post was going to be all about this guilty pleasure:

Kraft spaghetti suppers take me back to 1965 faster than a time machine. Like many other moms, mine was grocery shopping on Friday evenings trying to beat the Saturday morning rush. My dad was usually on the road; he was a professional bus driver and his job took him on lots of tours across the country. (I only mention this because there is no way that a spaghetti supper straight from the box would have been acceptable if he had been home.)

How exciting it was to haul in the grocery bags, unload them, and find that little box. It was our pizza, I guess.

Friday evenings also meant watching The Wild Wild West (1965–1969) with Robert Conrad. Remember him?

Ahhh, yes, the good old days when good prevailed over evil, Kraft spaghetti suppers were all a kid could ever want, and I was living a beautiful, balanced life.

Wild Wild West photo source (as it is impossible to track this poster to its origins, I am making the choice to allow it to stand)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Nonni Duty

Every now and then, I get "the call." It begins easily enough with a "Hello, Mom, how are you today?" And I can tell just in his tone that he needs me.

It might be that he'll be sending his résumé along and it needs some editing. (Gee, does he read this blog? If he did, he'd know that he should do his own editing.) Perhaps he's working on a paper for one of his classes and he thinks it could use a fresh eye. (Gee, does he read this blog?) Or he might be thinking of borrowing either the roof rake, the ice chipper, or perhaps even the car.

But the one that thrills me to pieces is "Could you watch Jake for a few hours?" Could I watch Jake? Are you kidding me? That adorable blue-eyed, chubby-cheeked, cherub of a boy? You betcha I can watch Jake!

So I arrive at my son's home. My daughter-in-law and my oldest grandson have gone to visit the Cape Cod relatives. My son, Jake, Bazil (the pug), Max (the black cat), and Phylis (the calico cat) are holding down the fort. My son and Bazil are most welcoming. Bazil is especially friendly and, even though I know that he is being charming because of the chunk of Pupperoni in my jacket pocket, I'm a sucker for big brown eyes and drool.

Jake and the cats are giving me a cool reception. Jake's eyes narrow to deep gray suspicion as he looks from me to his father. His dad picks him up from amidst the toys and bounces him slightly up and down while I smile at my grandbaby trying to keep the high beam down since grandbaby is skeptical. After Bazil and I have bonded and even Max the cat has decided that I'm okay, if her winding about my ankles is any indication, I try turning on the high beams...big smile, crinkle eyes, rosy cheeks...the perfect grandmother look turned full force on Jake, but he's having none of it.

Finally, the time has come for goodbyes and Jake is bellering before his dad gets out the door. My son looks back, his brow furrowing.

"Just go, we'll be okay," I say encouragingly.

Then I settle back to enjoy Jake who belts out every version of Baby Symphony possible for the next twenty minutes. Finally, even though his daddy has specifically told me that Jake won't be tired for another two hours, I decide that Jake is tired...oh yes, the boy is exhausted, and I haul out my best trick: Moon River. Moon River the quintessential baby lullaby and within a minute Jake is quiet and relaxing into the crook of my arm. He's so cozy and comfortable that it won't be more than another minute before he's dozing when...

In comes my son. I hiss through my teeth, "Get out. Don't say a word. He's just gotten himself calmed down." But noooooo, my son has come in to check on his boy. I have never wanted to clobber my boy so much.

At last, I am truly alone with the little cherub who along with his sweet chubbiness has a very large mouth and if he had been upset about his dad's leaving the first time, he was furious about his leaving the second.

For the next while, he eyes me warily after scrambling from my lap. I decide to clean the sink. Jake decides to do a mind meld with the door. Every now and then he watches me with a "What are you doing?" look on his face. After he realizes that I will not force him nor invade his space, he begins to thaw and by the time his father comes home a few moments later, we have achieved a fresh connection...cookies and juice, hugs and cuddles, tickles and games. All is well.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Vintage Bedside Organizer

Another Monday morning dawns... In the Northeast, the skies are gray and it's pouring buckets. The street is flooded because there's nowhere for the water to go with the snowbanks so high. This could get exciting. I know that others across the country have been dealing with all manner of weather woes including floods.

The tendency is to blame global warming, but I think of these things as cyclical. I've seen a lot of funny weather in my lifetime. A few days ago my grandmother told me about her wedding night away back on November 10, 1931. Noooooo, not that kind of story....gheessshhhhh. She was married in Moncton, New Brunswick on such a balmy evening that she and my grandfather and the entire wedding party walked to the train station in just their wedding garbs, no need for coats or sweaters.


Yesterday, I was visiting blogs — what else is new — and I found the most exciting thing at Knitty, Vintage and Rosy. It's a bed pocket!

It's so darling that I began to think what I could do to create one. I remembered the three or four pairs of vintage pillowcases that my grandmother passed along to me; they're so long and narrow that they haven't worked for my pillows, but they're quite lovely so I've been using them sometimes for dresser scarves. It wasn't a perfect solution, but I've found the perfect solution.

Since I despise bedside tables, the photo above shows how I've been getting old purse slung over the bedpost. It works quite well and I'll probably keep it, but this works even better.

It's pretty neat in that by folding up the open pillow edge about 7 inches and stitching all around (I also reinforced it by stitching up the center), I have four pockets instead of two. Here's a close-up of another...

One big mistake that I made was this: I realized that one design didn't work for turning would have been upside down. So I carefully deconstructed, put it together again, and then discovered that I had put it back together the very same way that it had been...brilliant I ain't. Oh well, not too bad for a day of creating four bed pockets.

Have a terrific Monday and stay warm and dry.

Sunday, February 17, 2008


God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing. ~C.S. Lewis

These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. ~Jesus (John 16:33)

Photo Source