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. 
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. 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.

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