Saturday, March 19, 2011

Perigee Moon

Here's my perigee moon shot. I never have quite got the knack of taking the moon's picture and it doesn't matter how coyly she smiles or how close she is or how luminous. Just going to mention here that most of the light in this shot is from the streetlight at the end of my driveway, which was where I was standing. The shot above is not zoomed; the one below is. ***I know that there are going to be some amazing offerings from the photographers among us. Let's hope so anyway!

Have you taken your best shot yet?

*** Edited to Add: Sure enough! Have you seen the amazing photographs taken by Lavender Dreamer's Beloved? No? Go look, you won't be disappointed.

And another: Lynda Naranjo's Amazing Photo of the Super Moon. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Gathering of Spring Wreath Ideas

Okay, so how long was that before I caved in and had to return? I'll tell you — long enough for me to clean the house, get a few fires under control, and to settle down and realize, yet again, that blogging is what it is and I should not fret the small stuff. As they say, "it's all small stuff."

My mission over the past few weeks has been to find some sweet spring wreaths around Blogdom. This from the gal who still has a snowflake on her front door.

I offer my own spring wreath from Christmastime. I've dressed it up for spring (probably more like summer) with a few cabbage roses and a ratty old homemade ribbon ripped from painter's cloth.

Here is a wonderful list of spring wreaths. The good news is that there are many more. A simple search will yield one that's just right for your home.

New Grass and Daisies Spring Wreath This one is so cool and easy. I've got mine well begun. It's going on the front door.

Whimsical Spring Wreath It may be described as whimsical, but I find it elegant. I want one of those moss flowers!

Coffee Filters and Dye Wreath Very Easter! Your dye choices are going to make or break this one.

Curtsy to Spring Sweet little bird and leaf pattern on a grapevine wreath make this one of my favorites. Love it!

Eclectic Flower Bouquet Wreath Now this one! Ahhhh, this is the one that I want for my china cupboard. So darling ... I am oohing and ahhing all over the place. Do check it out!

Square Wreath This is way cool. I love a square wreath. I think it's beyond my abilities, but I do love the look.

Spring Wreath Using Paper Flowers Sooo cute, I had to add it.

The Eclectic Flower Bouquet Wreath truly sparked my imagination. I looked at it, analyzed it, and walked away from it to do my own thing.

I knew that I didn't want to purchase anything for this wreath so I had to go on a treasure hunt in my own home. 

This was what I found in the garage. A Christmasy wreath that had seen better days. The ribbon was faded to rust so I just took it all apart saving what I could. The cornhusk (?) wreath itself was what I wanted. It seemed in pretty good shape. I did spray it with Lysol. You know me... ☺

Although my tutor suggested cutting linen on a bias for wrapping, I didn't bother. I simply ripped strips of painter's cloth, wrapped the wreath foundation, and pinned with simple sewing pins. It worked like a charm.

The next idea came from Lorrie at Fabric, Paper, Thread. She has a picture of her tutorials on her sidebar. I'm sure you can tell the one that influenced me.

Again, the doilies were simply pinned on with straight pins. I called it good enough and it was easy, easy, easy.

Then a few silk flowers were added to the side using pins...

And a ratty painter's cloth strip as a tie on top.

That's it!
The End.

No, it's never "the end" with me. I just keep on going and going. The most difficult part of this was adding a cup hook to the inside top of my cupboard to hang the wreath from. Last night, my daughter was visiting and I showed her my project. She was typically quiet. I should have left well enough alone; instead, I asked her what she thought. Her response was, "I don't know what to think about that."

So, please, if you don't know what to think about that, just check the links for the other wonderful wreaths. There is always so much to choose from in Blogdom.

Have a very pleasant day...

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Test

The maple sap was collected this afternoon...

Picture will enlarge

In addition to the old-fashioned maple syrup buckets, there's a new collection system with a big tank on the back of the pick-up. Trees are tapped all over town as this producer has asked permission to tap the trees of many homeowners. It's labor intensive on his part because most large operations have systems that don't even require collecting. The sap comes to the sugar house via tubing. Nevertheless, I'm glad to see someone doing it the old-fashioned way.


In other news, John and I went to Mickey D's tonight for a shamrock shake. We went to our usual haunt and found it closed. C L O S E D for good for renovations. We then went to a second one and it was also closed. I find this shocking. These establishments have been there since I began dating right after the Civil War.  Finally, we found one new Mc*Donalds and John had his shake and is good to go for another year. (He really is a strawberry shake kinda guy.) I decided against one at the last minute sticking with diet coke.


My cactus isn't confused anymore now that I've decided that it's an Easter cactus; it's blooming sort of on schedule if Easter weren't going to be so late this year.


Blogdom seems to have slowed significantly since a few weeks ago. I think our minds are all on Japan or Libya or Egypt or Israel or our own pocketbooks or all of the above. I'm going to take a wee break...a few days or more perhaps. The annoyance of this blog not updating has taken its toll and when one is stewing about a blog, there's simply not enough to stew about. You can find me in the sewing room shredding paperwork. Piles and piles and piles of paperwork. Ugh.

Until next time...

Comments are closed. This is really a test to see how long it will take this time.

Edited to Add: And just to make a liar out of me, it updates instantly for the first time in a week. Terrific! No, really, that's terrific.

Of Spring and Sap Flowing

Spring inside if not out

*new cups with pretty blue insides

seeds and a letter

spring vase

swan candy dish holding pastel M&Ms

I can't help it, I am thinking about spring, which will arrive Sunday. This is strictly a calendar event right now though it will most certainly come in a way that we recognize, first with melting snow creating lots of mud and ending in flowers and birdsong.

Still, the good news is that the sap is running and the trees on my neighbors' lawn were tapped Monday afternoon. This means that I get to watch and I do find it interesting. Wonder if I'll get my cup of sap water to drink this year while it's running good and cold. It's like maple flavored water, mild and delicious.

Best of all, they're the old-fashioned sap buckets! So quaint, so charming, just the way I like them! There's a great maple scone recipe right *here* and just as soon as I get some maple syrup, I'll be whipping up a those things.

(I am trying something new with posting today...writing this up in the evening and postdating it for sometime in the wee hours of the morning hoping to find it updated by the time I wake. This writing a post and not having it show up for hours and hours is for the birds. Perhaps it's just my blog's turn, but I don't like it one little bit. Anyone else having trouble with your blog updating as it should?)

{Posted at 12:10 am and it is now 7:13 am, but not updated. Yikes! This is getting worse every day. 8:13 am: not updated./ 9:17 am; shows up and says it was posted 9 hours ago. Finally!)

*Edited to add: Having just learned the name and brand of my cups, I'm dropping in the information: Taylor, Smith, and Taylor "Forever Young" or perhaps it's really "Boutonniere Ever Yours," which seems more likely. Either way, it's definitely Taylor, Smith &Taylor.

Monday, March 14, 2011


My grands really enjoy selecting their own snacks and it's all good as long as a wide variety of choices is provided. I offered carrots, celery, M&Ms, apple slices, orange segments, mini Kit Kat bars, mini Vanilla Wafers, and cheese sticks. Muffin trays were provided and the boys had as much fun choosing cupcake liners as they did snacks.

You can see this little guy has a sweet tooth

The younger seems to prefer carrots 

(Say, how'd that child climb up on the table without my noticing?)

Neither child ate everything, but there was a lot of carrot munching, celery munching, and M&M munching. Next time, I'll include just one sweet treat. I'm learning!

This grand prefers doing

Have a great Monday...

(posted at 9:55 am; now 4:04 pm and still not updated.; 5:31 pm nothing; 6:17 pm up and at'em and saying it posted 8 hours ago. Right.)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Christian life is Christ

We must do what God wants and stop thinking and worrying about what God has not told us to do. Nothing is safer for us or more pleasing to God than when we trust in God's Word instead of our own ideas...our wisdom is not what makes things happen, only the will of God does that. ~Martin Luther
I think we have strayed far from God's real priorities for us. With all our 'how-to' resources, I believe we have forgotten how to live. We have forgotten that the Christian life is Christ, not just a change of lifestyle...The Christian life is starting with Christ, then spending the rest of eternity discovering more and more of what we already have in Him, more and more of the wonders of this Person "in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." (Colossians 3:23) ~Bob George Classic Christianity (quoted by permission)

The weather has been so frightful below (mud, ice, dirty snow) that I must look up to see a beautiful picture. Now isn't that just like life sometimes?  :D

Blessings to you today...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Where's Your Camera Manual?

Do you know where your camera manual is? If you do, go get it. I'll wait.

You know the book I said I was going to be reading yesterday? Well, at some point, once again, I would've read the telephone book rather than to read that book. As it turned out, I read my camera manual; I learned something interesting; Yes, I'll share.

Did you know that you must reformat the memory card every so often? Let me repeat that. If you notice that the quality of your photos is going downhill (and you've not been drinking extra coffee or anything), it may be time to reformat your memory card. Formatting mine is done via the menu and then the tools option. I don't know where you'll find yours, but try looking under "troubleshooting." That's where I found my reference.

Wish that this photo proved that it works. Nope. I've now determined that, after two years, I need to replace the memory card. It's worked its little self to a frazzle. Or maybe I need a new camera... One last helpful tip: if you ever get the camera so messed up that you can't imagine what gremlins have taken it over, remember that most cameras have a "system restore" option. You can see that I put mine on speed dial.

Oh, about that book. I am going to finish it and, yes, I am going to critique it. Even though the reading of it is proving difficult, I can honestly recommend that you read it, too.

Have a great weekend...

Friday, March 11, 2011

♪ It's a Rainy Day; It's a Rainy Day ♪

This post was hatched prematurely when I went to place the musical notes beside the title. Sometimes Blogger just gets ticklish, I guess.

So 'tis raining and I have quiet plans to read Ann Voskamp's book One Thousand Gifts. It was the book that I hoped to purchase at Borders if they had stocked it. I sometimes fret what will become of bookstores. There are so many times when I want a book and it isn't available. So I did what we do these days and ordered it from Amazon. It arrived in three days' time and cost four dollars less than I would have paid at the bookstore and that included shipping. Sigh.

Of course I wanted to dive into the book because Brenda, Linds, and Kathy have been talking about it. I even tried diving in, but it wasn't long before I had set it down and was making wary arcs around it. It's an intense book. Today, though, this will be the scene.

I've just been alerted to the "intense" news of this day with the earthquake in Japan and tsunami warnings for parts of the West Coast and Hawaii. Life can shift so quickly...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Tale of a Simple Day and an Ironing Board Cover

Though I fought with myself from the time I announced in yesterday's post that I had errands to run right up until the moment I was backing out the drive, I managed to overcome. The older I get, the more challenging it is for me to leave the house. Sometimes I have even wondered...

Stopped at the storage facility and paid for two months so I wouldn't have to return any time soon and promptly managed to leave my gloves behind. Once I had parked at the grocery store and was looking for a cart, I realized immediately on two counts. 1. It's still crazy chilly here and, 2. I am one of those germaphobes. I don't like wheeling carts around without wearing my gloves. (Yes, I wipe the handles down as well.) So I got back into the car and returned to find my gloves sitting on the desk where I'd left them. The office gal hadn't had time to notice them as they simply disappeared into the general clutter of the office.

Spent $100 more than I wanted to on groceries. That's what you get for shopping while you're hungry. Had a little chat with the manager for not accepting my Fancy Feast coupon for 24 cans of cat food when I had two boxes of 12 each. That makes 24 in my book. In his, it meant that I had to purchase a box of 24. I must read the fine print on that coupon. After all, a dollar's savings is not to be frowned upon.

Came home and, after sorting out groceries and putting them away, I tackled the ironing board cover. My tutorial suggested flipping the ironing board over and tracing it on the fabric. This couldn't be accomplished in my sewing room so I switched to the bedroom. Then it couldn't be accomplished because I no longer crawl around on floors. Rarely that is. I save that for the times when, during a rousing game of Hide n' Seek with grandsons, a good hiding place means one must crawl. Otherwise, no, not so much.

working in the bedroom

Flipped the ironing board rightside up and used it as a model for its new cover. It worked fine. I used bits and pieces from several tutorials for this project, but *this one* was used most. This tutorial didn't mention a bodkin, but I loved using that little gadget. My mother always taught me to use a safety pin. Trust me, get a bodkin and never use a safety pin again for drawing strings. I also vastly prefer the drawstring method over using elastic.

in the sewing room where it belongs

Molly the Poodle Wonder Dog heard John when he arrived on the outskirts of town at just before five. I am certain of this because she set up such a rumpus from 4:55 on. Sure enough, he pulled in a few moments later. One would think that the five minutes' warning would have been enough for me to leave the ironing board cover, zip down the stairs, and pretend to be doing something in the kitchen about supper preparation. Good tip: even boiling water allows a hungry man to think that something is happening in the kitchen.

When at 5:30 I had finally made it down the stairs, I asked John if he minded a breakfast for supper...some thick sliced bacon I had left over, some eggs, hash browns, and toast. Oh no, he didn't mind; he's very accomodating. Foiled again—the bacon wasn't good. Not a problem. I moved on to some sausage—not good either. Good grief. Time really does escape me. It had been over two weeks since I had opened either package. Ultimately, we went with fried ham bought yesterday, eggs, hash browns, and toast. Some exciting supper.

Tonight I'll do better. I will!

Now I'm off to clean out the fridge.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ironing Board Stash, etc.

Molly returned much changed from the groomer's yesterday. Not only did she lose a lot of hair; apparently, she's lost quite a little weight. My sister had warned me about overfeeding her as I had been giving Molly even more than they give their big dog. So I followed package directions carefully and backed way off the treats. Now she's one svelte dog. I need a personal assistant like that.

Today dawned bright and lovely. I'm a bit concerned about the very red sunrise; you know what that bodes. I'm off to do my errands, pay for my mother's storage, and grocery shop. Unfortunately, we do need to eat. After being ill most of last week, I haven't been giving meal preparation much attention. Yes, I am quite convinced that John would like something good for supper.

Ironic thing about yesterday's exercise in template changing... Trying to avoid the limited choices in stretch minima backgrounds, I find that stretch minima backgrounds work best on my computer, which has a wide screen. Combining the stretch minima background with the new template allows me to have color on the edges and the all important white or light space in the center.

Lastly, I have my fabric, my string, my filler, and my bodkin, which means just one thing—a new ironing board cover! Oh how I hope it's as easy as it looks. If it turns out at all, I will certainly share. If not, you'll never hear this discussed again. :D

Enjoy your day!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Forgive Me While I Play

I made the fantastic leap yesterday afternoon to the new templates design letting go of my beloved mimima stretch background. I could rarely find satisfactory backgrounds for the minima stretch, which led to my decision. So watch me bounce all over the place today as I experiment hoping to land on something to my liking. The day is bright and sunny and that will make for better photography. Let's see where this takes us in another few hours.

Too Dark; Too Somber
7:31 am

 In the meantime, my apologies...

Also, don't mind my ongoing commentary as I work this through. One of my big complaints is that the screen flickers black, black, black as the page loads. Ugh. If I can't fix that problem, I'll be heading back to minima stretch.

Now doesn't one thing lead to another? I had to make a new header, which meant that I had to redo the top of the china cupboard, which meant that I had to dust and clean and vacuum, which ultimately led to having to do the dishes.

I'm having trouble centering my header despite using the code for the Advanced CSS. You can find that information *here* if it might help you. Doesn't seem to be doing much for me.

Gah! I quit. And it's not quite what I want, but as close as I can get today. What I've learned one could put in a thimble. This (at the can find it *here*) background is a wide-width one from Hot Bliggity Blog. When I use the standard size, I get a bit of decoration at the sides, but my sidebar material hangs over. I'm not a fan of that look. When I use the mid-size, I don't pick up much of the background at all, hence some of the truly ugly colors you may have seen. Oh well! Another day...

Monday, March 7, 2011

Monday's Story

Well that was fun! I enjoyed reading all the stories about our verbal tangles from my last post. Thank you for sharing them.

This is the story of our rainy Monday so far...

The sleeping cat and dog's little snores are making me so sleepy myself that I may join them for a nap any second now.

My weekend thrifting netted me this treasure, as if I don't have enough of my own ancestors about the place. ;> (Although it appears that she is on a plate, this is actually a photograph created for those oval frames one sees in old homes or flea markets. They were popular in the early 1900s. Emily is missing her frame. Perhaps I'll be able to find one someday. No, I do not know anything about Emily nor even that her name is Emily. She just looks like an Emily to me.)
Speaking of ancestors, I updated the post on *Alice* for those who would like to know where I'm leaving that. I am so not going to be anyone's favorite person. : {
Have a great Monday! (I'm off to take a nap or box up some memories.)

Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Slips are Steppery

What does it mean when we wix our mords up? I've done it three times today and it's making me nervous.

I just told the dog to be careful because "the slips are steppery." This morning I wrote on my calendar that Molly had a grooming appointment at Puddy Maws instead of Muddy Paws.

It does remind me that we had dear friends whose names were Percy and Gert. They often became Gercy and Pert. Oh well! Word fun. Brain scrambled.

Do you have any fun examples?

Have a great day...

Friday, March 4, 2011


It's been "Birthday Alley" again and today finds us celebrating. I'm recycling the angel food cupcake pictures. My daughter baked them for my birthday awhile ago and they were so light and delicious. This little plate pattern was featured at Penny's The Comforts of Home some weeks ago now. I have two cups and saucers and I want to give them away. So if you'd like to add two tea cups and two saucers with a sweet little French Chateau graphic to your collection, just let me know. As always, this is going to end quickly (Sunday, March 6 @ 7p.m.) and it is only for those who wander in and find it. Thanks!

A happy day to you!

Edited to Add  3/6/11:

Penny at The Comforts of Home aka "The Smasher" has just won. I am finding this so funny. It was obviously meant to be. I'm looking forward to seeing what these will next look like in Blogdom. It should be great!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


gotta love it!

Have been under the weather for two days and so had taken to my bed for the most part. (No, the echinacea couldn't hold me an entire season...blast!) John brought in the mail after coming home later in the evening last and there was something I had been waiting for. Though I had actually waited just a few days since ordering it, I've been waiting for a long while to order it.
You see, I fell in love with Lynda Naranjo's photography some years ago when I first arrived in Blogdom. This particular picture was my very favorite one so finally, at long last, having some birthday money in hand, I thought that I would treat myself to it and I'm so glad that I did. Every time I see it, I smile. It reminded me of a certain something though I just couldn't figure it out. Eventually, it came to me; it reminds me of my Great-grandmother Maude's Moncton home. It's always fun to figure something like that out. Now it's made all the more special by hanging on the wall with Maude's picture and my grandmother's. I had hoped that it might fit there right beneath the former. It won't; no matter. It's fine just where it is.

And just because I have been sleeping in my grandmother's bed since being ill, I noticed with new eyes the frame that has been there all along. Don't burst my bubble by telling me that it isn't quite perfection. I love it! It picks up the subtle colors of the photograph so very well.

Now pardon me while I go walking right through that door into a Summer Breeze as this photograph is named. Thanks, Lynda! It came through perfectly packaged and in top shape. If you'd like to visit Lynda's shop, here it is: Lynda Naranjo Photography.
Have a wonderful day and, yes, I am feeling ever so much better today.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Forever This Truth Remains...

I Belong by Kathryn Scott

From time to time throughout this video, a solitary figure makes her way along. If you ever feel very small in a great big world, this is a wonderful reminder that nothing, not even yourself, can separate you from the love of God.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
~ Romans 8: 38 & 39

A blessed, very blessed, Sunday to you!

comments are off

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Are We Getting a Titch Tired of This?


I'm sure that he is. I kinda like watching, though. ;>

Have a great weekend!

Friday, February 25, 2011




There you have it!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Grand Date

Now that I've got everyone interested in Alice, I'm going to drop the ball and look forward to the youngest generation. (I promise to return to Alice at some point. I do!)

My grand and I have had a "date" for a few weeks now. His little brother had been over last so he knew that his turn was coming. I'm milking this great desire to be at Nonni's house for all it's worth since I know these are fleeting times and the day is soon coming when it'll be no big deal to spend time here.

Though we played with castles, did computer games, went sliding outdoors, and read stories, his favorite part of the day was egg cracking. "Thank you, Nonni, for letting me crack the egg!" He was even willing to wear the loon apron.

Note # 6 and the folded hands while the mixer was going. This is a tip I learned at Lovella's right *here.* While you're visiting What Matters Most, perhaps you'd like to wish Lovella a very happy birthday!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Of Profile Photos and Such

I've not given much thought to profile pictures since I began blogging. I do remember using my own picture in the early days. I was so much younger then! And thinner! Then one day I began looking at my eyebrows and I took that photo off faster than one can strip off her turtleneck in a hot flash. I even posted about it way back *here.* There are some of you who'll remember...
The other day, I was looking at my Followers List and I was particularly drawn to the faces. I really enjoyed seeing each face. Now I look at my happy little list of Followers and think of it as a bouquet. I went so far as to think that God must love our faces, too, since He created so many unique ones. After all, even twins have enough differences between them to tell one from the other.
And that is how I came to put my own face back in the profile picture. Just one little problem. I can hardly stand to look at it so you may see it change over the next few days until I land on one that I can tolerate. I'm thinking of a butterfly or a pine cone or something like that. :D
Now it so happens that I do have a lovely face to share with you and it's in keeping with the theme of my sister's and my looking through old family photos. We've been able to go back through seven generations of women on my mother's side...her mother, her grandmother, her great-grandmother, and her great-great grandmother. That's five including Mother and with my generation and my daughter's generation that makes seven.

So, putting this in context now, this is my Nan's grandmother, her mother's mother. Her name is Alice. What can one tell from looking at such a sweet face? Probably not a whole lot. If I didn't know the back story, I'd think something entirely different. Sadly, I do know the story. Would you be interested to know, too?

It may be because I'm deep into Lark Rise to Candleford and all of the story lines there and the delicious little wisdoms shared. (I just watched this episode, which explains all I'll say about that.) Whatever the reason, I've had a change of heart about Alice. It may also be that I read Cait O'Connor's poem titled Genealogy Days, which changes my perspective.

This I will say, we can never know an ancestor more than the stories that remain. A photo can not tell the story. My maternal grandmother described her maternal grandmother in such unflattering ways that I have always thought of Alice as The Wicked Stepmother in Cinderella. Now I know that she had many more layers than my own grandmother could have been aware or wished to be aware having her own sense of things. I know that Alice's husband James adored her and that he sank down to his own end pining for her. I also know that she had a voice like a lark and the neighbors loved to sit on their porches to hear Alice sing from her own. That strikes me as the better way to leave her. When I had nothing but disturbing passed-on memories, I now may replace them with
better ones. Yes, I'm going to give Alice some grace all these years later and let those nasty stories rest.
Thank you for understanding...

Edited to Add Again: I'm getting famous for these. Aunt Amelia asked me how I knew all these things and here is my answer in case anyone else was wondering.

Aunt Amelia, thank you for the question... I know so much more now because of letters. Lots and lots of letters. No, she didn't run off. Died at home in 1924 after a lovely day spent with a friend...actually collapsed at the door while saying goodbye.Yes, I have that letter from her friend to my great-grandmother describing that day. I know that James pined for her because of letters written by his sons to their sister (my great-grandmother). It's been an interesting journey through the years now let me tell you.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sweet Times at the Lake~Mosaic Monday

My sister was home from New York for the long weekend bringing many treasures of our shared heritage. We looked at many old family photographs and we spent a lot of time looking at pictures of the lake in New Brunswick, Canada where we spent every childhood summer and many happy summer vacations until recent years. 
photos taken by my talented nieces
This mosaic pretty much tells the story. There's a lot of berry picking in the summer and the making of good things to eat with said berries. Yes, we train chipmunks — doesn't everyone? We sail, walk the tracks, swim, play cards, and enjoy the wild flowers. Since this spot is six miles from the nearest paved road and lacks many of the amenities of polite society, we pay careful attention to the signs.
Another of the treasures was a book of poems written by a family friend who also called this place her summer home. I share her poem "Blessings" with you.
photo will enlarge

Please join Mary at Little Red House for more mosaics.
(I'm off for the evening so am posting early. I'll connect up with Mary as soon as I can and visit as many as I can as soon as I can. Thanks!)