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Sunday, November 13, 2016

Back Again!

I can hardly believe that it has been since March since I last posted on my blog. I half expected to find that Blogger had closed my little place up, but it is still here and for that I am so glad and grateful. I will have to read my last post, I'm sure I made some promises to all of you, and forgive me if I haven't made good on any of them. I know I last posted on the well troubles and I did end up having a new one drilled. I have pics to share. Despite being extraordinarily busy this Spring, Summer and Fall, I have had spare time in my evenings to knit and crochet. I also read some V.C.Andrews paperback books that were squirreled away in the cupboards under the bookcase. They are now in boxes and have become garage sale fodder for warmer weather next year. I bought a 32' camper that sits on a permanate camp site and has the neatest fire pit area. I bought it about mid July and didn't get a whole lot of free time out there, but did enjoy it a bit before the camp ground closed up for the season in mid October. I really hate it that it took me so long to get back to all of you, but better late than never. Hope to see you soon, I have plenty to share plus, as usual, I have a ton of catching up with reading your posts. ❤️❤️❤️

Friday, March 18, 2016

Christmas Advent Calendar

 There all kinds of advent calendars out there. I suppose you could make one for just about any holiday, but Christmas ones seem to be the favorite. As a kid I remember one from Germany, a house made of sturdy paper. It had windows that had numbers on them and as the count down to Christmas began on the first of December, we started day by day to open the little windows. As a child it was magical, behind each window was a picture of a little figure, a deer, a sled, a cardinal, etc.. All we cared about was opening all those windows and on the 25th you got to open the front door to the house. The advent calendar has evolved and become a lot more interesting.


Rachael made this one for her son Holden. She got the idea from Pinterest. The hanging shoe organizer is relatively inexpensive and can be purchased from Walmart or a discount store. It comes with hooks at the top so you can hang it over a door. She cut scrap booking paper to size for the back of each pocket. Christmas designs were the best. There were 24 compartments, that worked out well for counting down to the holiday. A number was placed on each pocket, then came all the fun. You can do about anything. 
Examples:
Day #1  Today we decorate the Christmas tree
Day #2  Today we write a letter to Santa 
Day #  Today we make a Christmas ornament for the tree
Day #4 Today we bake Christmas cookies
Day #5 Today we make a gingerbread house

One activity from the advent calendar. Holden's gingerbread house.

Day #6 Today we read the story about baby Jesus 

I know my grandson loved this advent calendar. I know Rachael had a lot of fun making it for him. There are all kinds of great ideas that you can use for activities for family. No doubt all of you have ideas of your own involving charitable works and giving for the Christmas season and these could be incorporated in a calendar like this. I know I am still stuck back at Christmas, but I wanted to share this idea. Time passes so fast and before we know it it will be that time of the year again. I like a big head start and so do many of you. Hope this inspires you to make one or something similar. Have you any ideas or have you made something similar?
I would love to heard from you.
God Bless You All.
*** 

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Projects Past and Present, Death of Old Faithful, Birthday Pics


 Hello friends & fellow bloggers. As promised I am gonna show you what I'm working on as well as some finished projects from recent months. Above is the current crochet obsession. This is the ripple or chevron design that has been around for ages, but with a new twist.


The pattern starts out by chaining a multiple of 18 minus 1. It is done by alternating single and double crochets. I ran across this on Pinterest and if you are interested in trying something new then look up the Rumpled Rainbow Ripple Crochet Baby Blanket Free Pattern. katiecooksandcrafts.blogspot.com will give you an excellent tutorial on how to make this pattern into a scarf and instructions for making bigger items like a baby blanket.

She has a pic of her Rainbow Ripple Baby Blanket and it is so pretty. Below is a baby blanket I finished using her pattern. I went into my stash and I'm still trying to use up yarn in the tote.


Sharing with you a couple other baby blankets (see below) I made, just trying to put another dent in the store house of yarn I have squirreled away over the years.




The blue and ecru blanket was done in that rumpled ripple stitch.

I went to Sandusky last week. I stopped in at the newer Joann Fabrics store and picked up some fabric and a couple quilting books. 



Yeah, these books are exciting for anyone who loves quilting and scrappy looking piecing. I hope to get to the sewing machine sometime in the next several months and to finish some old projects and start some new. 


I want to share this book with all of you. I don't think any book has had a greater impact on me and my beliefs (secondary to the Bible). It will certainly shake you up and pull the rug out from under your feet. See, years ago when I was 16 I was baptized in the Baptist faith. I admit to being a backslider when I got married, and in those 43 years of marriage I continued to believe I was a good person, loving God and my family and friends. It took the death of my husband to bring me back where I belonged with God. I had not been to church in all that time. Things have changed for the better in my life and so have old beliefs. Two weeks ago on Wednesday I was baptized only this time it was for all the right reasons. I know talking religion is a personal thing, and I also know when a person avoids it it could be due to their own feelings of uncertainty and indecision. I am not here to preach to anyone or push my beliefs onto people reading my blog, but I hope you will be open-minded to read this book. You don't have to buy it, go to the library and borrow it. No, I'm not a Holy Roller Bible-Thumping believer, I'm just a plain and simple, humble, God-fearing "Christian" woman. No fancy labels on this gal. I'm not even a Baptist anymore. Imagine that. Yes, this book even changed that. And here I thought I had all the answers and knew it all.


If you want to read the exact words that the Bible has to say about worry and tomorrow then read Matthew Chapter 6:34. Basically it tells us not to worry about tomorrow because tomorrow has its own troubles and tomorrow will worry about itself.

So that brings me to this........

I come to the death of old faithful, meaning the well we had drilled 36 years ago. For 3 weeks there has been a problem with the well water. I have had the Culligan man here, the plumbers twice in a week and yesterday the well drillers. Yesterday the guys tried flushing out the well and the end result was nothing but muck and dirty, nasty water. The well is shot so to speak and the only remedy would seem to be drilling a new well. Can life be so simple, heavens, I think at this point it is a complicated mess. 


I had to run into Tiffin to the Health Department to get a permit for a new well to be drilled. Mind you, none of this is cheap, there is a sizable price tag. Let me just say I spent over $600 so far and still have no water. I have not even gotten the bill from the plumbers yet. I won't even go into what the new well will cost, but it has to be done, because the alternative of living without water is is not even a choice. One does not realize how many times in a day you use water, bathing, laundry, cooking, dishes, and flushing the toilet. One does have to adapt, but thank goodness this is for a short-term time frame. I could not live like this for long. I'm grateful that my children live close enough to be able to shower and that Walmart sells bottled water 24/7. I have watched episodes of  "The Hoarders" and how those people can live and not be stark raving mad from not having usable running water is beyond me. 





The power company was right on the ball. While I was gone to the health department they were here to red flag the power cable. I have yet to see where the phone company was here to mark anything. maybe they will come today???


Yet through all these troubles the sun will still shine and my little crocus have popped their heads up to brighten my day and make me smile. 


The little daffodils are faithful to come up too. I have been meaning for years to thin them out but that would be a job for this fall. 

I'm not going to explain the next pics but they are the missing ones that I couldn't get to download from my last post about Rachael's surprise birthday party. Hope you enjoy them.





























Well, we end this post with Jasper letting you know that there was more food but Grandma forgot to take pictures of it and he was keeping a watchful eye for any scrap that fell on the floor. 
 Until next time, take care, be safe, and God Bless All of You.
***

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Rachael's 39th (Surprise) Birthday Party December 2015


Forgive me for back-tracking. I know everyone has moved on because here we are just about in the middle of March 2016 and I'm dragging all my readers way back to around Christmas time of last year. I wanted to share a happy time in December when my oldest daughter Rachael (bottom right) turned 39. Her husband Chris (upper left) decided to give her a surprise ugly sweater birthday party (even Santa came). She was surprised.  Not a single soul left the cat out of the bag and she had not idea. The only one missing from the picture is my brother Ralph (feeding his face in the kitchen) and my brother John and his wife Panee who rode around the block 3 times unable to find the place, so they headed for home. Of course, like any typical male he would not stop to ask anyone where the house was, and he doesn't have a cell phone so he couldn't call me. The party was fun and we all had a good time. 

I know that this post is rather pitiful. I had started it weeks ago and downloaded a lot of pictures. There were plenty photos to go along with the one above but blogger isn't letting me into my picture files. I'm disappointed because I wasn't able to show you the neat birthday cake decorated like an ugly sweater. Several attempts and nothing happens. Grrrrrrr! All the pics of projects are missing too. I'm shaking my head, rolling my eyes and restraining myself from pulling out my hair. Time is so precious and it is frustrating to have to feel like one has wasted time. Seems like nothing gets done unless it has to be done twice.

I will be back. I have plenty to share. Today just doesn't seem to be the day. Before I go though, I want to thank all of the people for visiting and commenting. A question was asked if I send out a news letter and sorry to say no I don't. If I was more organized and less busy I might do that but right now it doesn't seem to be possible.
Until next time, take care, and God Bless all of you.
***


Saturday, February 6, 2016

Back Again, Mom and a Recipe


It has been too long, has it not? I think so, and now I find myself in the midst of the month of February celebrated with hearts, candy, flowers and love. Where has the time gone? I feel it has just slipped through my fingers, like so much of my life. There has been 10 deaths in my family in the past 5 years, that is not counting those friends who have had losses too. Sooner or later it all comes to us and we have to face it. I'm starting to know a lot of widows and widowers, but love stays doesn't it, and life goes on. 

I did not want to come back here with a depressing subject, but life is not all about roses. My mother passed away the end of October. By the way, her name was Rose. She was 84, would have been 85 this past December 10th. She lived a good life for the most part and was able to live in her home up until in July when she fell at home and broke her hip. As with so many of the elderly she went down hill from there. It is a blessing to know that she is no longer suffering, and I hope in a better place. And with that I will let this story lay to rest as I hope she is at rest now too.
***
So, I imagine those of you who have been faithful to me are wondering what I have been up to, what I have been doing. I have been busy. I still babysit for my grandson 2 days a week. Just plain and simple, he is a joy. I can always depend on him to make me laugh and to brighten my days. I have also done some knitting and plan to share with you soon the most recent projects.


Another thing I have been up to recently was doing a bit of cooking. I got the bug up my butt to teach myself to make egg rolls. I have a sister-in-law, Pawnee, we call her Penny, she is from Thailand. She makes excellent egg rolls. Years ago she made some for us and they were delicious. I know they are time- consuming, I know they can be expensive to make especially if you don't have the ingredients on hand. I found dozens of recipes on Pinterest. I went to Meijer in Sandusky (I love that store) and loaded up on what I needed. If you are ambitious, the recipe follows all the pics.







Chinese Egg Rolls

1/2 lb. ground pork or chicken, beef, or omit meat and use veggie filling
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. fresh ginger, or 2-3 tsp. ground
4 green onions, sliced thin
1 egg beaten with 1 tsp. water
1/4 c. soy sauce
16 oz. bag shredded coleslaw mix, I used Dole
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
veg oil for deep frying
1 tsp. sesame oil
12 egg roll wraps


Brown the meat with ginger and garlic in pan, drain grease.
Mix salt, sugar, soy sauce and sesame oil. Add meat and mix well.
In large bowl combine cabbage mix and green onions.
Pour hot meat over vegetables and stir well. Let cool slightly.
Lay wrap in front of you so it looks like a diamond.
Place about 3 tablespoons filling in center of egg roll.
Pull bottom point up over filling and roll once.
Fold in right and left points.
Brush beaten egg on top point.
Finish rolling.
Continue with remaining filling.
Heat 2-3 inches of oil in frying pan to about 350 degrees.
Fry egg rolls for 3 minutes on each side.
Drain on paper towels.

 Just a few hints, you can use a head of cabbage, but the bagged coleslaw makes it a less messy job and a nice short cut. I used the minced garlic in a jar. I measured out what I needed and left it drain on a paper towel to get rid of the extra liquid. I forgot the fresh ginger and used 3-4 tsp. of ground ginger that I had on hand. The first batch I did I forgot to do the very first roll of the wrap (that is what happens when you don't read instructions very well), but they turned out okay. I also tried deep frying them in more oil, but once I tried to flip them they kept flipping back to the side that was done. The following week (second double batch), I tried 1-2 inches of oil in a large frying pan and that problem was solved. I made egg rolls 2 weekends in a row. I loved doing them. I didn't count how many I had the first week, but I had enough filling for 51 the second weekend. After they cooled, I divided them up into quart freezer bags and into the freezer they went. Of course I am sharing with family. The only down side to all of this was the mess it made on my stove top. Next time I am going to try baking them and see what happens. My brother Mike and his wife said they were better than the ones at the Chinese restaurant :) If you make them you will not be sorry, they are great!
By all means check out Pinterest, they have tons of different egg roll recipes, and you could even tweak them to suit yourself.


Do you know what this is? It was one of the things my mother brought from Germany when she came to Ohio back in the early 50"s.


I highly doubt that anyone uses these any more, but back in the early days you needed one cause socks needed mending.


It is a darning egg, not your usual shape. Do you have one from your mom or grandma?
I found it among mom's sewing things. It is a treasure.


She said she kept these little tights she made me. I searched for them, but it was my brother Ralph who found them.


This is the back view of them. She didn't have a pattern, just a great love of knitting and a little girl who needed to be kept warm in the cold winter days in Germany.


Here I am in Germany wearing the tights that my Mutti made me.


I wanted to keep them safely tucked away and went on Amazon and bought this Herbal Moth Repellent that I can add to the storage bag I put the tights in. It does not have the odor of  moth balls and actually has a pleasant smell. The little tights are safely tucked away now in a dresser drawer.

It feels good to be back here again. I have missed all of you so very much. I don't think anyone who spends time on here can not get attached to those people who spread their kindness and loyalty to others. I have seen it written so very many times that blogger friends are the best, and I have to agree 100%. No where else can one find people who share in all the happiness and give support in sad times. It means so much to be able to escape to the keyboard and visit people who have only known you a short time, yet it feels like old friends are so close. Thank you for visiting me, thank you for being a friend. God Bless you all.
I am truly blessed.
♥♥♥


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THAT THE ONES YOU LOVE ARE LIFE'S MOST PRECIOUS GIFTS~