Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Bag Lady

In my previous post I mentioned that I have an apron fetish. 
I also have a bag fetish.  Not purse, but bag. 
A few months ago Lynn at Ramblin' Southern Woman posted the cutest bag ever.  It was made of placemats!  And I thought "I can do that". 
Since then I've made seven of those placemat bags.
Here are four of them.  The others have already found new homes.
These are going to be given to my girls when we take our family vacation this weekend to Great Wolf Lodge in Kansas City. 
Except for the wine one. 
That one is mine!  Because I love wine!

Placemat Bags
 I plan on making one more of these (or two, or three, or four...) for our Church Silent Auction.
Can't you just see a Fall Themed Placemat Bag filled with yummy goodies or baking supplies?  I can!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Seven things about me

Last week Intenseguy honored me with an Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award.
 Sweet blog awardMost of those who follow my blog, follow his.  If you don’t, you are missing out.  Iggy’s blog has taught me a lot about history – sometimes things I kind of already knew, and often time the odd bit that I never would have heard of if it wasn’t for his blog.  And then, there are the spattering of sensitive, heart warming, and honest, it is what it is, posts.  Not to play favorites, but I will have to admit his is hands down one of my favorite blogs.  I guess that is the reason this award is meaningful - His opinion means a lot to me.
I'm supposed to tell you 7 random facts about myself, tag people and pass the award on to 5 other bloggers.
  • I love to bake homemade goodies.  There is no better scent than a freshly baked loaf of bread, or rolls, or pie, or…. well you get the picture.   Although I don’t bake very much any more, for the obvious reason that the two of us don’t need all of that temptation, I still find kneading and pounding dough as a great way to work off stress and frustration.  Try it sometime!
  • I have an apron fetish.  They fascinate me!  I remember my grandma Hood always wearing an apron.  She would be taking it from around her waist as she’d come out to greet us when we arrived at her house.  Then the moment she went back inside, the apron would reappear around her ample girth.  Man how I loved that woman! 
Can you tell by looking at this picture which apron I did not make?  I honestly wear them all the time.   In addition to these aprons, I’ve made them for friends and my kids.  They all probably think I am nuts.
  • I recently completed 4 weeks (2 times a week) physical therapy for arthritis and bursitis pain.  We did strengthening exercises, ultrasound, and a treatment call Iontophoresis.  This treatment pulsated steroid medication directly into the painful area without the need for injections.  For the first time in many years I am mostly pain free… and lovin’ it!
  • If you ever tell me I cannot do something, you may well be the cause of my demise, because if I am not able to do whatever you said I can’t, I may die trying.
  • I hate sauerkraut.  I hate bowling.  I fixed sauerkraut for Jim and a friend last week, and went bowling with Jim yesterday.  True love.
  • My favorite dog breed is Golden Retriever.  I still miss our Goldens, Dolly Belle and Lucas, even though both have been gone for many years.  However since I don’t like contending with large house pets, I now have a love/hate relationship with my demon dog Chihuahua, Whiskey.  And yes, I absolutely love the little turd.
  • For many years I was a secretary.  Then I went to college and worked my way up the ladder to an administrator in a data center, running after the money rather than happiness.  Now I am retired and work part time as a secretary (among many other hats since I am the only employee) at church.  I am happier than I have been in years, once again doing what I am best at. Speaking of secretaries, in this day and age of electronics, it seems they are a dying breed.   Does anyone else still know short hand?  Do my younger readers even know what short hand is or looks like?  (and no, I don’t mean LOL and GMTA, and U R)  My mom taught it to me when I was still in grade school.  When I officially learned it in high school, though, I discovered mom’s shorthand was different than what was being taught in class.  I had a terrible time undoing the bad habits I had already learned!  After all these years, I still write my notes in short hand.  Old habits sometimes die hard (or not at all). 
    I am supposed to pass this award on, but sometime I don’t play by the rules (ooops that is number 8 about me).  If you think this would be a fun thing to do, please grab the award and join in, because each and every one of my readers are special and irresistibly sweet.  I found it fun to do a “me, me, me!” blog.  Try it, you’ll like it!!!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Burning down the house

My baby girl, Julie, turned 31 last weekend.

We celebrated with a meal of pulled pork, oriental cole slaw, the best augratin potatoes ever, baked beans, and the worst red velvet cake ever (you win some, and lose some).  It took six matches to light the candles on that god-awful cake.  The candles lit up the room like fireworks on the 4th of July (kiind of like her smile) and we were praying the smoke alarms wouldn't go off.  She almost blew all those candles out in one puff (or four or five...)

Burning Down the House

Julie was our rough and tumble little girl.  She really had no choice, since she had an older brother and sister who never slowed down... she just had to figure out how to keep up!  It seemed like if something was going to happen, it was going to happen to Julie.  Like the time she almost caught the house on fire when she laid her coat and hat on top of a lit kerosine heater.  I believe she was only 3 at the time.  I still remember that charred coat laying in the middle of the driveway, where it landed when we threw it out the window. 

Cowgirl Julie
And then, of course, there is the matter of Julie's hair.  Oh what a rats nest it always was!  But she didn't care.  She was off and running each morning and heaven help the person who tried to slow her down by performing the useless task of combing the tangles out of her hair.
Six year old Fishergirl

Today our dear Julie's a wife and mother of three, stepmother of one.  It is no surprise that while surrounded by all of that testosterone, she rolls with the punches, and joins in all of the outdoor activities with zesto.


So, happy birthday Julie!  You will always be my baby...

Christmas 1980

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The True Meaning of Stress

I received the following in an email the other day, and thought the words of wisdom worth sharing with my friends.
The True Meaning of Stress
A young lady confidently walked around the room while leading and explaining stress management to an audience; with a raised glass of water, and everyone knew she was going to ask the ultimate question, 'half empty or half full?'..... she fooled them all... "How heavy is this glass of water?", she inquired with a smile.
Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.
She replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long I hold it.
If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes." She continued, "and that's the way it is with stress. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on."
"As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden - holding stress longer and better each time practiced. So, as early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don't carry them through the evening and into the night... pick them up tomorrow.
Whatever burdens you're carrying now, let them down for a moment. Relax, pick them up later after you've rested. Life is short. Enjoy it and the now 'supposed' stress that you've conquered!"
1.  Accept the fact that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue!
2.  Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.
3.  Always read stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.
4.  Drive carefully... It's not only cars that can be recalled by their Maker..
5.  If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague
6.  If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably worth it..
7.  It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.
8.  Never buy a car you can't push.
9.  Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won't have a leg to stand on.
10.  Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance.
11.  Since it's the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late.
12.  The second mouse gets the cheese.
13.  When everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.
14.  Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.
15.  You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person.
16.  Some mistakes are too much fun to make only once.
17.  We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.
18.  A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.
19.  Have an awesome day and know that someone has thought about you today............
20.  It was I, your friend!
Save the earth..... It's the only planet with chocolate!

God is crazy about you.  He sends you flowers every spring and a sunrise every morning.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


We had noticed this house from the road years ago and hoped to someday get the chance to tour it.
So, last weekend when Jim was surfing the internet checking out interesting things to do, he noticed there was an annual Ice Cream Social and house tour at the Maclay House in Tipton.  We thought “This is perfect!  We’ve been wanting to see that house for ages!”
We headed up Highway 50, through Tipton, on to Highway 5, since we knew that is where the house is located.  But when we got there, we were the only ones there.  It didn’t take us more than two seconds (maybe only one) to figure out we had our homes mixed up and there really was a mansion IN Tipton, not north of Tipton, that really was giving tours and was having an ice cream social.  But, there was an OPEN sign on the gate of what we now knew is RAVENSWOOD.  What the heck.  We were there and this is the house we’d been wanting to see, so we walked around until someone came out.
I will have to tell you it was a little bit like stepping back in time.  The “tour guide” was apparently a caretaker who happened to give tours if someone showed up.  After we paid the $14 admission (we let him keep all $20… just because…), inside we headed.  I was occasionally put off by his wife-beater almost white t-shirt, and once white, very stained jeans.  We held our nose (seriously) and  pushed ahead. 
Ravenswood was built in 1880, and six generations later, remains in private ownership in the same family.  It and the 2000 acres that go with it is in a trust and cannot be sold.  We’ve heard that in many ways the family consider it a bit of an albatross around their necks. 
Over the years few changes have been made to the house.  Electricity and indoor toilets were added at some point.  My heart ached for the dismal state it was in.  Some rooms were kept in the “period”, others were mostly junk, and yet others were a mixture of the past and present.  It was all very confusing.
I think since we tipped George $6, he not only took us through the house, but also up the rickety stairs to the crows nest, and down into the moldy, damp, basement.
In the basement was a “gentleman’s room”, with a door only 18 to 20 inches wide.  This is where the men went when they wanted to drink or smoke, since neither were allowed on any other floor of the house.  The story is that the door was made narrow on purpose so that no woman in the full hooped dresses of that time period could get through the door into the men’s territory.   Supposedly the room was very elaborate at the time.  All we could see in the darkness was water/dirt covered floors and what looked like faded leather wallpaper.
Sometimes, mistakes are good.  This was one of those times.  But, next year we are going to try to make it to the annual Ice Cream Social at the Maclay house!

Monday, July 4, 2011

They're BAAck!

We have a few sheep again.  When we sold our flock a year ago, the plan was to buy a few sheep every summer and raise them up to sell just before winter hits.  That way Jim doesn't have to feed them hay through the winter.  What we didn't count on is the fact that it would be very difficult to find a few sheep at a decent price without going to sale barns.  But find them we did! 

Here they are - just in time to wish everyone a Happy Independence Day!

We were hoping to get four rams, but only came home with two... but two is better than none.  These two are already sold - to be butchered in November.  So, I don't dare get too close to them.  I learned that lesson a long time ago.

Some of our kids and grandkids are coming over later this afternoon for a cookout.  It should be a lot of fun.
Hope everyone has a great day.  I know I plan to!