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Showing posts from 2007

Happy New Year ! ! !

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We will hold a little celebration tonight to welcome in the new year. Toast 2008 at the stroke of midnight with a glass of my favorite Champagne, (Veuve Clicquot) a special gift from that gentle man of mine. He does spoil me...
It is my deepest wish that your new year be filled with great love, meaningful friendships, prosperity, gratitude, freedom from want of the things you need and simplicity that allows you to embrace life in its fullness. May God bless each and every one of you !

Black and White Winter Day

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A wander around our land today, camera in hand, seeing the results of old man winter stirring things up a bit. I love the contrast that black and white provides, it makes you look beyond the obvious. So much like life. We so often get caught up in the obvious, muse over the blatant and miss the subtle, miss the delicate shades of contrast right before our eyes.

My environment. . .
A scented candle filling the house with the smells of winter, glistening snow on a balsam tree.
On my back, clothes of gray and black which makes me smile, was there some unconscious connection to the photos of the day ?
music playing... The sound track from Lagaan The music played at Melanie and Casimirs wedding

New Years Eve

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I have never been much for going out on New Years Eve. We are staying in this year as well. I will share some pictures tonight from our celebration. Honestly I am not much of a party person anyway. I can remember a couple times in my 20's heading out to celebrate the changing of the year, but they seemed a waste of time to me, it seems like just another day on the calendar, but one where people make a big deal of setting goals that probably should have been daily goals all along. My goals this year are that, goals I should have been keeping every day.
I can tell you that tonight on my table will be something I put on my dream board for the year 2007 and believed it would be there. In the year 2007, each and ever single dream I had listed on my dream board came true. So not only am I making a list of goals, but I am making a new list of dreams. They are different. For my dream board, I print out pictures of the things I want, or the places I want to go. Some I print out on magnetic …

Grandpa is a happy man tonight !

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Emery and I had the blessing of watching Mei-Ling for a couple hours tonight and that wee little one made her Grandpa smile from ear to ear when she said, "Grandpa" as clear as can be. She grabbed his beard as she said his name. I am kinda jealous, she hasn't said Grammie yet ! Mei-Ling just loves Emery, she waved hi to him before she waved to anyone else and now said his name ! There is one happy man in this house tonight. Mei-Ling is steadily gaining weight and according to my scale tonight, she is just a bit over 17 lbs. What a blessing ! Just looking at her, you just can't imagine she has so many health issues. I honestly believe all the prayers and good thoughts have brought this baby through so many critical situations. We feel so blessed. Mei-Ling just celebrated turning 8 months old a couple days ago.

A Re-post.... I need to listen to myself

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This is a bit humbling to me to re-post something I wrote on Wednesday, July 19, 2006
I need to re-read my own words, inspire myself with some "right in the face" observations that I made a year and a half ago but lost my way. Life is a journey and sometimes we get a bit lost on the trail and end up going around in circles until we find our way. Yes, I can make excuses for myself saying that the past year has been more than difficult for me, but in honesty, it would just be one more excuse .
For well over a year now I have been for the most part following the way of life as described in the book, French Women Don't Get Fat by Its changed so many thought patterns that I held on to that didn't serve me very well. I have been slowly loosing weight and feeling good. Yesterday in doing a bit more reading about the way French women take care of themselves and I came across the books of Anne Barone. Her web site is filled with great information too http://www.annebarone.com It…

A New Look

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Long before Christmas, Emery took me to Ikea and let me pick out whatever I wanted for our bedroom. I had to promise to wait until Christmas to have the things he purchased for me. Since I love red, I chose a pattern with red in it so my accents could be red. I loved the crewel embroidery pillow and lamp shade that went with it. Found drapes that just sort of bring it all together. Once the construction aspect of the remodelling is complete, making our room nearly twice as large as it is now, and the walls are painted and papered, I will feel like we have a new room altogether. I am happy with how it looks, pretty but not too feminine. I just read a decorating book that said to make sure the master bedroom is not too girlie when its a shared room !

Life Sure Is Good

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The bed felt so good this morning, too good to leave, so I lingered. Emery was off to work, I had nothing pressing. I was enjoying that nearly buried feeling that comes from sleeping on a feather bed covered in soft flannel sheets. Piles of quilts and blankets over me. I pulled Emery's pillow under my head propping me up so I could look out the window at the bird feeders. One single chickadee ate hastily. The faintest scent of Emery's cologne hung onto his pillow, it made me smile. Love is like that.
I never can stay in bed very long after I am awake. I get antsy feeling. Things to do, a world to explore, discoveries to be made. New drapes to hang in my bedroom, Christmas decorations to come down, music to listen to, coffee to drink and laughter to picked up and embraced.
I put on make-up, not much but just enough to make me feel good. To feel like I am taking care of myself. New clothes to wear, hair to style and a decision to wear real shoes and not just my sn…

Inspiration for achieving

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The new year is right around the corner and I have very specific goals for myself in the coming year. One is to, no excuses allowed, reach 134 lbs. In order for me to reach that goal I need to set things up for myself. Motivation needs to be nurtured, maintained, and cultivated. I know what it takes for me and I know in the past year, with all that went on with Melanie and Mei-Ling, their needs took priority as it should have, but now, I need to work on myself. In the past year I can probably count on my fingers and toes how many times I really had a good run. I went to the gym sporadically at best and the treadmill got dusty once or twice. My eating was not well planned and certainly did not receive the attention it needed. Lovely meals in settings conducive to pleasurable eating were just not the norm.
The holidays are over and I feel like my body is made of sweets. Its not a feeling I like any more. I find myself anxious for my hot water and lemon in the morning, and a nice fresh sa…

Thinking About Christmas

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I slept late today and it felt good. It seems like the month of December has flown by and I hardly got to notice the days being checked off on the calendar. I don't mind though, each and every day was fun, full of blessings that filled me to the core with gratitude for the life I have.
Now that Christmas is over, I would be perfectly happy to take all decorations down, tree included and get back to the normal, pre- Christmas life. I think part of the reason I feel this way, is my love of no clutter and after the holiday, the decorations feel a bit like clutter to me. All the anticipation associated with them is over. I want my corner back for my rocking chair where the tree now sits, that sort of thing. I have been thinking about what I want to see for myself in the new year. Been making a mental list of goals and objectives and by weekend they will meet with paper and pen and become a commitment of sorts. Its good to write down what you want to see happen, and better yet if y…

The Day After Christmas

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Melissa flew in the day before Christmas and flew out the day after Christmas. Such a short visit but we were grateful to have her for any length of time. James and Melissa celebrated their 3rd anniversary on the 26th and it was just as cold yesterday as it was on their wedding day and they had the ceremony outside !!!
Melissa, Melanie, Mei-Ling and I got up nice and early on the 26th and headed out shopping for bargains. We had some coffee at Starbucks, yes a real treat ! This day had been in the plans for a long time. Elizabeth is quite sick so Priscilla and the baby could not come with us. Elizabeth spent Christmas day, coughing up copious amounts of mucus. Poor little one, she has had a few nasty bouts with upper respiratory illnesses. So off we went, good walking shoes on and I was well equipped with determination to start shopping for next Christmas. I did well. Spent about $50 and got well over $120 worth of items. The girls both had fun using gift cards they had received as …

Our Christmas, in pictures

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Presents and babies !
Emery having fun opening his presents


Elizabeth discovering a new toy
One of Melissa's favorite gifts, a big huge box of Cheez-its
Lots of presents, lots of fun
Mei- Ling enjoyed opening her own presents !
Melanie passing out the presents from under the tree, just as she has done since she was a little girl

Emery and Melissa, Christmas night as we walked around the city park enjoying the christmas lights.

As you can tell from the pictures we all had a wonderful Christmas !

The Greatest Gift We Can Give

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No shopping required, its not too late to prepare the greatest gift of all. The stores may be closed, your wallet empty and the wrapping paper all used up, but still there is time to give this one special gift.
The greatest gift we can give is the gift of love, of kind words, of a gentle spirit. As a child I only knew what love and acceptance felt like. My days were filled with hugs and kisses, a mother that had time to play with me, a father that was not so preoccupied with work that he was a stranger, and then there were my sisters, and my grandparents that lived with us. I was surrounded by loving arms and gentle encouraging words. And I still am. It is by far the best gift I have ever received. And one each of us can give to another. If you want to understand the love of God in its fullness, you must first understand what love is. It was not the gifts wrapped up under the tree that my family gave me at Christmas that taught me about love, but it was their gift of love each…

The Greatest Joys, And Hope

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It is the day before Christmas and all through our home, there is the wonder of expectations, the joy of preparing for friends and family joining us to celebrate the birth of hope.
There are presents under the tree, goodies to eat, lights that sparkle and stockings hung with anticipation.
I sit here, comfortable in my warm home. I am loved, and love. My children have never been estranged, my husband is the only husband I have had. Those two things along in this world of fractured relationships, are blessings I cannot take for granted. I have never been hungry or gone to sleep at night with feelings of anger towards my loved ones.
My dreams have come true and there are more to come. In my heart lives the joy of understanding the deepest reason Christmas is celebrated. It is hope, hope for a world with kindness and compassion, a world where people will rise to a higher calling and treat each other with that love and selflessness that Christ taught. The hope that anger …

Jack Frost Paid Us A Visit

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It was so very cold last night...the north wind stilled, the moon shone bright and the stars twinkled and with that came the cold. When we woke this morning the thermometer read a chilly 18 degrees. The entire land sparkled with frost. It now feels like Christmas is just around the corner. Melissa and James will be flying to Texas tomorrow ! A few lines from the poem,
Jack Frost ~Gabriel Setoun~
The door was shut, as doors should be, Before you went to bed last night; Yet Jack Frost has got in, you see, And left your window silver white.
He must have waited till you slept; And not a single word he spoke, But pencilled o'er the panes and crept Away again before you woke.

See's Fudge Candy Recipe

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This is a recipe my family has made every December for at least 4 decades.
I don't use margarine, which means I make it with butter, just adding to the calories ! It's so good. This year I used 62% cocoa chocolate chips mixed with the regular chocolate chips, (about half and half) resulting in a bit richer fudge.
SEE'S FUDGE CANDY (THE “ORIGINAL” RECIPE!) 4 1/2 cups Sugar 3 packages Chocolate chips (12 oz ea) 1/2 pound Margarine ( I use butter) 1 teaspoon Vanilla ( I double the vanilla) 1 can Evaporated milk 7 ounces Marshmallow cream 2 cups Nuts ( we like it without nuts)
Mix 4 1/2 cups sugar with one (1) can evaporated milk. Boil 7 to 8 minutes, stirring often. (rolling boil) My personal note here....Scrape the sides often and don't let it burn. I stir the entire 8 minutes
Mix together in a large bowl; 3 packages chocolate chips, 7 oz. jar marshmallow cream, 1/2 lb. melted margarine. Cream margarine and marshmallow together and add chocolate chips. Pour hot mixture over …

A Re-post. . . Needed to be inspired, to Find My Balance

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Here is a re-post, a reminder for me today. . .
Needed to be Inspired, to Find my Balance November 8, 2006 Sometimes we get so caught up in the busy-ness of life or the single mindedness, that some areas of our life slip. Its been that way for me lately. I have gotten lazy in some areas, or maybe not lazy but lost focus. It seems that maintaining an even balance and consistency is not always easy in this world we live in. When I read other blogs I see the same things in other folks. It's not only in me and that's a bit of a comfort since misery does indeed love company. One week someone will write that it's all about getting rid of the stuff. Stuff they excitedly brought into the house last month and now they are overwhelmed by it. There is talk of resolve to do this or that, but looking back you see that falls by the wayside. We have so many things thrown at us in this multimedia life. It's hard to remain on the slow and steady pathway. Seems we need to work on maintaini…

Keeping our Motives Pure

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Living with compassion is work, it requires we keep a check on our own behaviors as it seems at times the most natural way to be in a bit unkind or with a hidden agenda to teach someone a lesson. I sure am guilty of that. Its not something I like about myself and yes, it can be easily dismissed with the common train of thought..."well, no one is perfect". " I try, isn't that enough?" "They had it coming". " They did it first !" You see we have all the answers to excuse our behaviors and make them seem less "not so nice". People will tell you if you are always kind and compassionate you will get run over, that is probably true to an extent, but sorta like in the cartoons, we can learn to bounce back as though nothing bothered us.
Personally that is the hardest thing for me, to not let things get to me. There is a verse in Psalms that I quote to myself, in hopes I think that it will one day soak in, " Great peace have they that l…

What Kind Of Coffee Are You

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You Are a Frappacino
At your best, you are: fun loving, sweet, and modern

At your worst, you are: childish and over indulgent

You drink coffee when: you're craving something sweet

Your caffeine addiction level: lowWhat Kind of Coffee Are You?

MorningRamble Gifts

For Cathy and everyone else that has contacted me recently wanting to order Note Cards
MorningRamble Gifts is open and doing lots of business ! Thank you to all that have ordered.
I am hoping to have the Black and White collection up soon along with a winter collection. The spinning collection has been selling very well along with the homestead collection.
It's been such fun for me !

Don't Be A Scrooge

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Wikipedia says of Ebenezer Scrooge, he is the main character in Charles Dickens' 1843 novel, A Christmas Carol. He is a cold-hearted, tight fisted, selfish man, who despises Christmas and all things which engender happiness.
Last night on the news they were talking about how people are adopting a rather "Bah Humbug" attitude. Angry at all the money they have to spend, have no idea of what to get anyone because people have all they want. Well, I agree about too much money spent on gifts and yes it is hard to get something for the person that has everything including a picky attitude about the gifts they receive, but NEVER EVER let that steal from you the joy of Christmas. Spend less, plain and simple. Save all year long for gifts if you want to spend a lot of money. Use NO credit cards unless you have the money to pay the bill the second it arrives. Think all year long of gifts to make that will be just the right thing. Don't wait until the mad rush of December to be s…

Almost Happy Winter, and a gift offer

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Tomorrow, when the sun shines directly over the tropic of Capricorn which will take place at 1:08 a.m. EST, winter will officially take place. It doesn't feel much like winter here in North Texas right now. Yesterday I was hauling wood to the wood shed and stacking it with no jacket on, short sleeves too. My New England blood tells me that winter needs snow this time of the year, not BBQ weather. I am hopeful that some time this winter snow will fall here and I will get to play in it. Yes, I actually do play in it. I don't need children home to still play. I will make a snow man, fall down in the snow carefully and make a 53 year old snow angel. I will wear two pairs of socks. I will have mittens that need to be placed near the stove to dry out, have snow in my boots, rosy cheeks, laugh at myself and be careful to walk back in the footprints I made on the way out, so as to not spoil too much snow. I will run and fall, laugh about how falling is not as easy as it once was. Come…

We Are Designers

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I get busy with things...especially this time of the year. I even get busy thinking and trying to figure out what life is about. It seems my brain has a hard time relaxing. I want to solve lifes problems, world problems, and make sure there is nothing I am missing. The world we live in is such an exciting amazing place. New things to learn each and every day. So many books to read that enlighten us, give us those "light bulb moments" as Oprah calls them. And on top of this, we are designers of our own lives and that takes a lot of doing. Even not doing ! Yes, don't worry here, I am not talking about the part of us that God made, I am talking about how we are the ones to decide, make the choice on what we make important in our life, what we focus on, what we dress like, what we choose to value and stand tall for. What our words say about us, what the style of our homes tell about us. Even if we put on the clothes of a famous designer, he/she has not chos…

Mei-Ling Update

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The sweet one endured a lot of poking and prodding, some x-rays and other tests. They couldn't find anything wrong so they sent her home with some antibiotics and by the time they were ready to leave her fever was down already. With Mei-Ling we all tend to panic when something is wrong, she has been through so much. But God watches over this wee one in a special way. Thanks for the prayers.
I can now go to bed and get some rest, knowing the sweet one is going to be o.k. Sleeping soundly

Need Prayer

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Mei-Ling had to be rushed to the hospital tonight with a high fever. Please say a little prayer for her that all will be well. She has been doing so well, we just want this wee one to be o.k. This was her yesterday when she woke up from a nap at Grammies house. All smiles and full of energy

"The Art Of Imperfection"

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This time of the year we work hard at appearing perfect. Having the house decorated just right, having baked the best goodies, choosing the perfect gifts and on and on. It makes life stressful.
I wrote this post a ways back, November 06, and I personally needed to read it over again, to remind myself that its really o.k. to not have things just perfect. Perfect is for God and seeking to have things perfect all the time can turn you into a major control freak, and that my friends appears to be one of the most destructive self inflicted stresses in life. Sit back, let the dust mount, have a less than perfect cup of coffee or tea, and enjoy what can become, "The Art of Imperfection"
A few bloggers out there have recently written about being perceived as perfect and are quick to enlighten us that they are indeed normal and have lives that are filled with things like dust, dirty dishes and bad hair days. We feel the need to set the record straight and that's fine.A while back I…

A New Award

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Angelena over at Country Life gave me this award today. It made my day ! Read about this award here It sorta felt like a nice hug today. Less than three is <3 a heart, a way to show admiration. So simple and so important
Thanks Angelena ! Passing this cyber heart along to 5 of the many bloggers that I just love to read. Marci at Down on the Farm always a refreshing place to visit, and beside, Marci is simply just a great person to know Bonnie over at Quiltville's Quips & Snips Bonnie always inspires me with her quilts and for being who she is. I had a wonderful afternoon once with her, quilting and visiting in my home. Shellie at Musings of a Mid East Mom is another blog I love for a multitude of reasons and so would like to tell her how much I appreciate her blog. Shellie is a really nice person with a really beautiful family and she teaches me things that I need to know Crunchy Chicken is a blog that I love too for all the good stuff she shares. I would give her a cy…

Beauty in many forms

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The beauty of a rose seems so obvious to us, they are showy in color and scent. They are for the most part eye candy. Yes, the oil and water made from them can scent a room for a long time, or the dried petals last a bit longer with the scent, but it is the eye appeal that we so often speak of. Rosemary, ever-green, so long lasting, so vital for some recipes, so full of flavor. Comfrey, a bit prickly, but such a plant of healing. Mullein, fuzzy leaves, showy tall stalks full of flowers, healing in both flower and leaf, a comfort plant. A plant that can sooth an ear ache, or calm a cough.
Lavender, so fragrant and for me, so hard to grow, but worth the work for the lasting scent that relaxes and soothes the hurried mind. Finally in the group, rose geranium, tiny flowers, curly leaves that when rubbed and bruised, sweet fragrance fills the room. Different plants, different uses, yet all of them improve our lives in one way or another. People are like that too. Our children…