Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Yarn Along - It's Back!

I used to be part of a group that posted once a week, a post titled YARN ALONG.
The point was to post a picture of something you were reading, along with what you are knitting - or crocheting.  Then you share a little about what you are doing with others, and you link it to Ginny's mama post, so you can all get inspired and motivated by what you see and what you read.  Well, it had been going for quite a while and Ginny decided last year that she needed a break.  So it stopped.  But after a year off, she has come back, but on a monthly posting.  You are invited to join in any day of the month, up to the time that the next month's posting starts.  So.... I'm not one of those every week posters, but very often I was an every week reader of at least some.  I've read a lot of good books on the recommendations of YARN ALONG virtual friends.  So here is my January 2018 post...

Right now, I've accepted a reading challenge from my daughter.  We are both pretty busy in life, but who isn't, right?  So my beat-up red kindle holds "The Hobbit" - January's challenge is to read a book you read in high school.  I'm not young, and I read a lot, so nailing down a book from highschool was not as easy for me.  She is reading Where The Red Fern Grows.  I read that as an aide to the reading teacher.  Didn't think that one would count for me.  I'm also reading this GREAT BOOK by Carl Lentz, OWN THE MOMENT.  We heard him speak this fall at the Hillsong Conference.  The whole conference was a great experience, but he was one of our favorite speakers.  Scott read this first and I made him promise not to share it because I wanted to read it next.  And he would read a chapter or 2 a day at breakfast and he enjoyed the whole book and often shared a passage.  And I have a sharing copy ordered, on it's way to my house, along with a Dave Ramsey book that I ordered before I located this Howard Dayton book on my bookshelf.  Are you ever too old to re-examine your finances and spending habits??
My knitting is slow and sad, but this was a Christmas stocking for my new granddaughter.  Not to worry.  I know my limitations and what needed doing.  I have added family members, but their stockings were just gift bags.  This year was different and I got some fleece and sewed a nice stocking for my son-in-law, daughter-in-law, future daughter-in-law, and new granddaughter.  They are cute and they work and I can take my time to knit Elliana's stocking and maybe it will be done for next Christmas.
So why not hop over to the YARN ALONG, and so what other folks are doing with yarn and books.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Another day... a bit more snow...

 Yesterday. I talked about my front window.  Today, I'll chat about my back window.  The way my kitchen is set up, I have a great view out the back, through sliding doors, onto my deck.  Days like today, it's one of the ways that I check the weather.  If it's REALLLLY bad out, I can't see those trees at the back of my lawn.  Further away, is a street, Shadyside, and a row of houses, and then the lake.  Past that is Findley Lake, beyond, I can see houses, and also street lights.  There are trees behind those houses, and they go up and out of sight.  On clear days, I can see all the way to that end.  The trees and sky meet and it is a clear shot.  On days like today, I can't make out the lake.  There have been periods when I can see the lights on the other side, like this morning, when it was just getting light.  But pretty much since sunrise time, my view is pretty limited.  And it just keeps snowing.  I'm OK with this snow.  I've got nothing pressing.  I have sewing to do.  I have a fire in the fireplace.  I have movies and cable and Netflix.  I have soup in my crockpot.  I even have a generator.  That might seem extreme to some of you, but as a house on a road bordered by lots of old trees, losing electricity was a frequent occurrence.  If you have tried getting ready for work, lost the use of your water pump and furnace for long periods of time, and had to do stuff in the dark as many times as we have, the generator def makes sense.  It doesn't power the whole house, but enough to make it livable and we don't lose the contents of refrigerator or freezers.  So I'm camping out in my little nest.  Content and warm.  And maybe a bit crafty.... or just chillin.  What do YOU like to do on a snowday?  Or not do?

 Here's to enjoying a break in craziness...

Friday, December 29, 2017

More Snow - We GOT that !!

This was my view, this morning, out my front window.  I like having a window over my sink.  I know it is not a requirement in all homes, but it definitely a bonus in my book.  If you are going to do dishes, and kitchen sink work, it just makes it more pleasant when you can watch the world at the same time.  We have received a huge dump of snow.  If you watch the news, you know that Erie PA was a state of emergency, with the National Guard called in.  We are 1/2 hour from Erie, but lovingly known as THE SNOW BELT.  We usually get more snow than the City of Erie, and this time, I'd say it was close.  The biggest problem with them is, they don't have anywhere to go with the snow.  We are used to it.  We blow the driveway 2-3 times a day and don't drive around if we don't need to, and when we do, we kick our trucks into 4W low and take it easy.   But, I stray from my original start...
So, when the snow is up to your mid to upper body parts, the kitchen window is a great place to look at it from.  And I feed birds.  I know that my bird friends like the black sunflower seeds.  I don't get the feeders filled until the snow comes.  My mom feeds all year.  I'm not reliable enough the rest of the time.  Not enough time spent at the sink.  But, at this time of the year, there is something relaxing and comfortable to be had by spending time at the sink.  Maybe some good music in the background.. or maybe blaring loudly... smells around you - candle or cooking.  I've walked across today to the office.  Casual Friday here.  Slippers, yoga pants, and a comfortable sweatshirt from Newfound Lake, NH.  Newfound Lake- It was a nice place to visit and I visit it in my mind each time I put on that sweatshirt.  My yoga pants have never done a yoga move in their life.  But if I SHOULD think about yoga, I'm set... just casual attire.  The snow is starting up again.  The day is slowly fading, from light gray to dark gray to nighttime.  I have a date tonight with a fireplace.  Perhaps a little with a sewing machine or cutting some fabric.  Stuff I want to do.  To make the winter a little more comfortable for someone else.  Stitching up some love.  So I guess it's time to head that way... another winter day in the books...

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Looking Ahead.. New Beginnings

 It's that time of year, when people are scrambling to shop and wrap and party.  But next week, they will be giving the new year a long hard look.  It's the time when you admit you have a flaw or 12, and you promise yourself to do better.  
What do you think the stats on New Year's resolution failure is?  Pretty high... across the board, and especially in THIS house!  But some years ago, I ran across a list of goals for the year.  Less pressure than a BIG resolution or 2.  And it was suggested that you write them down and tuck them somewhere that you will frequently run across them and remind you to stay the course, or get back on... make the difference...start the habit...embrace the opportunity.
  So, I think it's been a few years since I've done this...so it's time for another shot at it.  I'll be mulling this over for the next week or so...and maybe you will too.  
  What kinds of things will YOU write on your list this year??

Goals for 2018
List three things you’d like to experience this year:
List three books you want to read this year:
List three things about yourself you want to improve:
List three places you’d like to go / see this year:
List three people you will pray for this year:
I. Spiritual goals

II. Family goals

III. Physical/Recreational Goals

IV. Career goals

V. Household goals

VI. Financial goals

Monday, December 4, 2017

Just wanted to say....I miss you..

Since life keeps taking twists and turns and I attempt to keep up, I have unfortunately, let this part of my activities slide a bit.  No sense saying I'll try better, because I have said that before.  More and more I am hit with how actions speak so much louder than words...  So we will see what can be arranged.  Technology has shifted, so that I am snapping pics with my phone and posted them on facebook or instagram, but they don't get here.  How sad.

And the fact that I really didn't have a following, but have let it slip long enough, that I'm sure I have lost the 3 people who did read the posts...wow!  BOOHOO ME!

But anyway, as life has moved on, so has my title.

SO, if you are going to be too busy to post, this would be a good excuse.  The smiling has started!  They are so cute and cuddly when they are tiny, but this is a whole other phase to adjust to.  3 months old and pretty special to us.

See you soon!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Hung this up in my Erie office this week.  I made it a few weeks ago, but hadn't gotten the hanger stuff on the back.  Then I got the screw eyes and left them in the camper, so I got it all in the same place finally and now it is hung.   I replaced a Titanic print that was up there...and there was another one further to the left on the same wall.  Think I'll paint something else to hang there...
This hangs by my desk, which is a less public space in the office here.  It could be an ice breaker.  You never know.  I don't preach at work, but I have been known to have some pretty deep conversations and do some praying with people.  I'm not a good rememberer these days.  It's just better if I pray right then.  It can be a little awkward sometimes, but it gets easier.  Praying on the phone works too.  And people are affected by God right there.  It is pretty cool, actually.
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And here is my new baby,  held by my mom.  We didn't do a 4 generation photo.  I didn't even pull out my real camera, just my phone.  It was a couple of hours of passing this sleeping sweetie back and forth.  And we just enjoyed that time.  In a couple of months, she'll be squirmier and it will be more of a challenge.  The new dad entertained us with a couple of baby poop stories, that you appreciate in different ways for different kids.  Hello, Grandma Mona !!

And just so you know I haven't been sitting around eating bon bons, here's a picture with one of my little friends as we are throwing color on folks at the color run.  We are a good team, because he gets the high places and I get the low ones..

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lol and have a great day

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Elliana Loren

I know I've been slacking

I know I claim I'm busy

I know you miss me incredibly

but I have to show you...

We got one of THESE~
It's not just a baby, it's a GRANDBABY !  And she is so sweet and I can't wait to see her again, and again..  She was born September 1st and we think we got a good deal.

Now we have to learn a new job - Grandma and Grandpa.  There must be a book on that...I should at least google, or start a new pinterest board.  I need to do a good job.  And now I am totally distracted.  So off I go.  I've been camping (in a camper) but I still have a week's worth of dirty laundry...  I have some sewing projects that I should work on, and just a little straightening in that room to find my way.  I think I even saw some buttons to sew on, and I can do that if I find some chocolate.  It's kind of a trade off.  I need to start a new book, cuz I finished my other one.  And it's breezy and I just think snuggling under a blanket  would be a good pastime.  I am working on that list of autumn/before snowfall type of jobs...and it keeps growing.  I have a place where the rainwater ALWAYS goes over the gutters and rushing, washing dirt down the hill under the deck and I need to find a solution to that, because I'm getting tired of all the dirt on my deck under my clothesline.  I need to build a dam at the top... hmmm...off I go...doubley distracted...


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

I read this....

OH, and I still read as much as possible...  I just finished this...

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 and before that I read this

Days Go By..

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Each time I write a post lately, I feel the need to do the New Year's Resolution thing of promising to do better... but I don't.  So now, I'm just looking to post...take it as it is.

The summer has again flown by.  I don't know why I continue to be surprised by that year after year.  I guess I grew up believing that summer was the breather, giving you space and catch-up time before the school schedule kicks in with all its craziness.  Perhaps it was that way when I was a kid.  I can't even tell you that answer.  But I do know now, that it isn't less crazy.  With our last of 4 off to college last weekend, we are empty nesting again.  And a lot less controlled by that school calendar.  Sometimes I miss being a part of that school activity community, but many times, I'm sort of glad that I'm not trying to fit 4+ ballgames and all the other kid things, along with meals and laundry and a part time job or 3 into each week.  Sometimes it's sad to think of all that happened over the years, that you missed, or didn't really have the time to enjoy, because so much of life was just whipping by at break neck speed.  I was looking at a corner of the boys' room last night and picked up Dan's graduation gift of his scrapbook.  I was very much the picture taker and I get all weepy and nostalgic when I look back on those days gone by.  I often think, dang, what I'd give to go back to a day of each kid and just be able to savor the hours of stories.  Reading together was very much my thing.  I'm sure I've shared that many times in the past, but I read separate stories most times to all of the kids.  The oldest stopping only when he started freshman football and was too tired... or maybe just felt like he grew out of it.  But I truly savored and enjoyed those minutes each night when I'd snuggle up with each kid to read their chosen book, or the next chapter...and I could usually be convinced to stretch it to a second one.   I look forward to continuing that with grandchildren.  There were some tight time$ in our life, but $ spent on books was never wasted.  I picked them up at sales and bargain bins.  We had a Borders membership which gave us coupons and there was that reading area.  My kids loved going there to poke around and see if there was something new by their favorite authors.  We used the library a ton.  At one time, we were actively checking out books from 3 different libraries.  And it was worth it.  I'd do that again any day of the week.  I think we only permanently lost 1 book.  Not bad, considering that rate at which we were reading anc checking out books.

So, I'll count this toward the start of my August posts and look forward to being on Staycation next week.  Well, sort of.  I am going to be in my camper, but not too far away.  Just not needing to work or answer the phone.  A blessing and a curse when you own your own business.  Hope your week is going well, and that we talk again real soon.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Mac & Cheese & Corn Hole & God

Last night, we had our parking lot event at church.  This marks the 3rd year that we have done such a thing.  It is an attempt to reach outside our walls, outside our doors, and into the community to fellowship and just have fun...no strings attached. 
  The first year, we had a Mac and Cheese cookout, along with having our praise band set up in the parking lot.  It was a great event and we shared a lot of food with our neighbors.  The second year, it was a bit later.  We put 3 firepits in the parking lot and circled up around them.  We had our pastor playing guitar and a couple of folks telling their favorite parables.  Hot dogs and smores roasted in the fires and just a general, casual, good time of fellowship. 
   This year, our younger team members wanted to bring back Mac & Cheese, add the hot dogs, and especially for the new twist, do a corn hole tournament.  The 2 young girls handled all the corn hole details, ran a great event, and had a good time.  We sure appreciate Lauren and Kate and their spirit.

 But, after we prayed and started tasting mac & cheese and doctoring up our hot dogs, the throwing started.  A lot of the practiced throwers teamed up with younger ones to make it a fun event.  No entrance fee, no charge for food, no problem.  But before we were very far into the first round, the clouds came...
So, we waited it out, and we ate some hot dogs and we ate some mac & cheese and some chips and cookies, then we dumped the water out of the boards, and loaded them up and headed to the school gym to restart the games and continue on this fun time.
We had winners and we had losers, but everyone had a good time and it is something we will probably try another time.  Just between friends....

 So thanks Kate, and Lauren, for all your hard work, for the idea, for encouraging people to enter, for walking around the neighborhood with me to hand out invites... You two are a big help on our team..

Until next time....Good Night.

Monday, July 17, 2017

The problem with SOCIAL MEDIA and ME

I'm thinking about stepping back a lot more from this whole Social Media thing.  I was visiting with a group of 4 young moms who were talking about cutting it out all together.  I have noticed all 4 are on it again. SJ does home parties, and this is the biggest invitation/advertising/teaser method that the company uses.  She was off completely for awhile before this.  KB actually unactivated her account.  Now she is back.  JW and CN never gave it up.  They share a lot of family interaction by this method.  Sometimes when you live away, that keeps you in touch.

The pre-election time was kind of the beginning of my prickly feeling.  Things were just nasty.  And they continue to be politically nasty.  I have unfollowed some, and unfriended some other.  And then you get into the part, where email went for awhile, where there is just an excessive amount of sharing. Send me every joke that made you laugh today, and funny pictures and video links and before I know it, I am watching too much stuff.  I become a victim of email pollution.

 Perhaps this is where I like PINTEREST and use that probably too much, also.  I have secret boards.  Ideas to craft.  Away from the eyes of others.  I'm not looking to make myself look good.  I'm looking for something totally useful, and if I share that with others, it's not to say "Hey look how awesome I am."  It's more if I can do it, maybe you can do it... and get that saw in a place that is more handy...or put all that wine in one place...yes, it is pretty crooked.  But no wine has fallen off it yet!  And I've made other things from here.  And I'm always looking to get ideas...more ideas that I will ever be able to do, but it's good to have options.

Part of my point, is, in the right mood, seeing everyone else's perfect life is a little hard to take.  I've read a ton of blog posts over the years, and the ones that I have kept reading, are the ones that are honest - the good and the bad.  The ones that are all rosy are the ones that make your own not-perfect life a little harder to bear.

So here is what I did last week, after discussing this in a bible study group.  I got out my smart phone and removed the facebook app from the front page to another page, then I actually tucked it inside of something else, so in passing, I don't even see it.  I shut off notifications, so it doesn't call out to me to look.  I also have a group or 2 that sends a ton of notifications and I turned them off.  Halfway there.  Then I started on my Kindle that night, and brought up the friends list.  Who do I really not talk with if they are in the same room, not that I'm snobby, just we don't gravitate toward the same topics...and also, who is posting things that make me feel prickly.  I understand it is hot.  And I'm in a different place in my life that some of these people.  But who is posting things that make me feel like I'm failing at life.  And who is sharing more than I need to see.  I went through the list and didn't see the option of unfollowing.  So I made some choices here to unfriend them.  I don't HATE them, or wish them ill.  I'm just uncluttering my brain and sometimes, my heart.  There were people and names on there I couldn't remember ever hearing anything from in years.  And then there were some I waffled on.  I poked around a bit and found the place to unfollow.  We are still friends and whatever that is good for, if I have committees and messages to a group, those people are still available that way.

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I've already found this small gesture is an improvement in my attitude.  I'm still on Facebook.  I even post on Instagram, but not many followers there to clutter my thoughts.  Each has their purpose.  I just needed a break.  So if one or 2 people are reading this, thank you.  I'm giving it to your straight.  I'm doing a study called Lord, Change My Attitude, Before It's Too Late by James MacDonald and 2 weeks in, it's already making an impression.

Thanks for listening.  Feel free to comment...or unfollow...whatever is best for you.